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


[TOC] [part 12] [part 10] [Cutler's History]


This town is situated on the Neosho River in Parker Township, and about ten miles a little west of north from Council Grove. It was incorporated in February, 1871, the incorporators being C. G. Parker, J. A. Rogers, G. W. Clark, H. Daniels and W. M. Thomas, and these, by the articles of incorporation, were made the first trustees of the town. The following spring an election was held for town officers, at which J. A. Wallace was chosen Mayor.

It is a very neat little burgh and a good deal of taste is exhibited by the manner in which the houses and their surroundings are kept. It once had pretensions to be the seat of justice and disputed the field with Council Grove for this honor. Having been defeated it resumed the tenor of its way, and the people turned their attention to making the town as attractive as possible and to compete for the trade of the surrounding country. The inhabitants are a spirited people and support a live and ably edited newspaper.

It has the same railway facilities as Council Grove, both being located on the M., K. & T. road, which runs diagonally through the county from northwest to southeast. There are in the town one store devoted to dry goods and groceries, two to drugs and groceries, one to hardware and groceries, one to groceries exclusively, and also two cheese factories. There are likewise two harness shops and a wagon shop. There is, besides, a steam grist mill, with saw mill attached, which was erected in 1871 by C. G. Parker. He it was who also built the first residence in town. The first store in town was put up by Eastman and Thomas, in 1870. The town has a very fine stone schoolhouse, two stories high, which was erected in 1871, and the first teacher in town was G. McCullom. In 1880 the Methodist organization of the place put up a very handsome stone edifice, and take the place for all in all, it bears an air of neatness, taste, thrift and prosperity. Its population is between 200 and 250.

Council Grove and Parkersville are the only incorporated towns in the county.

Morris County Enterprise.--This paper was established in October, 1877, by V. C. Welch, who has been and remains its sole editor and proprietor. It is published at Parkerville, in Parker Township, and is Republican in politics. Its circulation is about 500, has quite a good local advertising patronage, and is issued on Thursday of each week.

Methodist Episcopal Church.--This society organized at Parkerville, in 1880, with sixty members, which, since that time has increased to eighty-five. They also have a neat and commodious edifice built of stone, where they meet for worship. The pastor is Rev. C. Atkinson. The organization at White City was formed about 1874, with forty members, the first officiating pastor being Rev. Mr. Glendenning. The present membership of the society numbers sixty-five, and the pastor is Rev. Mr. Ward, who also officiates at Skiddy. The society has a very neat frame church building and is in a very prosperous condition. The organization at Skiddy numbers between thirty and forty members, and having no church building they meet for worship in the schoolhouse.

Parkersville Lodge, No. 168, A., F. & A. M.--Located at Parkerville. Organized January, 1876, with twelve charter members. First officers: W. M., A. Moser, Jr.; S. W., J. F. Cress; J.W., G.W. Clark; Sec., J. H. Corbin; Treas., C. Kear; S. D., H. S. Day; J. D., A.G. Pierce; T., W. H. Moriarty. Present membership. Present officers: W. M., A. Moser, Jr.; S. W., H. S. Day; J. W., O. A. Owen; Sec., P. B. Van Dorn; Treas., H. Campbell; S. D., Samuel Downing; J. D., T. N. Haun; T., C. A. Lewis.

Philoxenia Lodge, No. 124, I.O.O.F.--Located at Parkersville. Organized March 2, 1875, with five charter members. Its first officers were: R. H. Oaxley, N.G.; H. Miller, V.G.; Joseph Moore, R.S.; J. Kinath, Treas.; H. L. Scoggs, W.; M. B. Shields, Con. Present membership, twenty-five. Present officers: A. Johnson, N. G.; S. C. Black, V. G.; E. K. Brush, R. S.; T. N. Haun, Treas.; Charles Atkinson, W., and H. L. Skoggs, Con.


LEVI BRIGHAM, P.M., and railroad station agent, was born in Dunkirk, Chautauqua Co., N.Y., January 6, 1824. After attaining his majority, he went to Pennsylvania, where for ten years he was in the lumber and mercantile trade. In 1851, he crossed the plains to California, engaging in the water business two years, having one of the three wells in San Francisco at that time. Returning to Dunkirk, he went to Tennessee where he engaged in railroad building for a time; afterwards, removing to Kentucky, he had charge of coal mines for about a year, when he again returned to New York, where, for a year or two he engaged in merchandising. During the War he engaged in farming, and at its close, he removed to Rockford, Ill., where he farmed until 1871, when he was appointed station agent of the M., K. & T. R. R., at Parkersville. A year later he was appointed Postmaster. Both of these positions and that of express agent, he still holds. He was married at Lockport, N.Y., in 1844, to Miss Mary E. Hutchinson. They have six children--Helen, Hanson, Flora, Frederick, Levi and Fidelio. His family are identified with the Episcopal Church.

HIRAM CAMPBELL was born in Chester County, Pa., February 21, 1838, living there until fourteen years old, when he went to Virginia, where he learned the milling business with his father. At the end of four years, he went to Philadelphia, where he was employed in a large merchant mill until the breaking out of the War, when, in 1861, he enlisted in Company F, of the regiment known as Baker's California Regiment, and afterwards as the Seventy-first Pennsylvania, serving nearly four years in the Army of the Potomac, and taking part in the various battles on the Peninsula and Virginia. After the close of the War, he returned to milling, which he followed until the fall of 1875, when he engaged in the hardware business which he now carries on, having a stock of $2,000 in farming implements and $4,000 in hardware, stoves and tinware and doing a business of $12,000 per year. He is a member of the Masonic order. Is also mayor of Parkersville.

J. F. CRESS was born in Lee County, Va., May 1, 1840, living there until 1857, when he removed to Kansas, remaining one year in Douglas County, and the following year he removed to Morris County, where he has since resided, engaged in farming and stock raising, making a specialty of farm stock. He has two farms, one in Parker Township, in Section 16, of 160 acres, 100 acres under cultivation, the rest pasture and timber, and all under fence. The other is in Highland Township, consisting of 240 acres in Section 22; 100 acres under cultivation, the rest pasture land. On this farm are two miles of hedge fence, good orchard and other substantial improvements. His livery stable in Parkersville is one of the best stables in the State, being a large two-story building of cut stone above, (front being Masonic Hall), 52 feet front and 80 feet deep, with a capacity of thirty head of horses in single stalls, 2,000 bushels of grain and twenty tons of hay. He employs in his livery business twelve to eight horses, sic besides upwards of fifty head that he has for sale, and three trotting and draft stallions. He makes a specialty of raising farm horses. Mr. Cress is a prominent member of the Masonic order, being the present Master of Parkersville Lodge. He is also a member of I.O.O.F. order, and has been a member of the Union Baptist Church since 1865. He has also held a number of civil offices, such as Mayor, member of Council several years, and School and Township Treasurer the past eight years. He was married, near Lawrence, Kas., October 6, 1863, to Miss Eliza E. Williams. They have eight children--Alba M., Banna F., Parker W., Everett L., Blanche V., Dicy A., Myrtle A. and Loyd E.

H. S. DAY was born in New Richmond, Ohio, March 19, 1841. When the late War broke out, he enlisted in Company C, Twelfth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, in April, 1861, and served until July, 1864, when he was discharged. He then engaged in business, manufacturing and selling perfumery and fancy goods in New Richmond, until the fall of 1870, when he came to Kansas and homesteaded 160 acres of land, in the north side of Morris County. He assisted in organizing Ohio Township, and was its first Township Trustee elected. He engaged in real estate and immigration business at Parkersville, in 1871, devoting a part of his time to that until his homestead was opened up, and since 1879, has devoted all his time to real estate and immigration business, making several trips to Eastern States each year in that interest. He is an enthusiastic Kansan, and has rendered valuable services to Morris County in opening up her lands and securing good citizens. He believes Kansas to be the greatest State and Morris her finest county. He was married in New Richmond, Ohio, January 15, 1865, to Miss Nannie Lindsey. They have three children--George, Maggie and Walter. Since his residence in Parkersville, he has held the office of Justice of the Peace two terms, and Police Judge two terms. He is a charter member of the Masonic order of Parkersville.

DR. A. J. EASTMAN, physician and surgeon and druggist, was born in Wyoming County, N.Y., November, 1846, living there until 1870, when he moved to Kansas. He located at Parkersville, and built the first business house in the town, in which he opened a drug store, which he still carries on, his stock of drugs, groceries and sundries amounting to $5,000, and his annual sales about $20,000. He attended lectures at Buffalo Medical College, and has been practicing medicine the past fifteen years. He was the first physician to permanently locate at Parkersville. In addition to his mercantile business he is largely interested in real estate in Parker and Ohio townships. He is a member of the I.O.O.F. and A.O.U.W. besides, and the Select Knights of the latter. During Gov. St. John's second term he was Lieutenant Colonel on his staff, and Aid-de-Camp to Major-General Anderson, with rank of Major, in Kansas State Militia. During the first few years of residence at Parkersville he held the office of Postmaster. He was married in Genesee County, N.Y., in 1867, to Miss Stella Macomber. They have one child--Burt.

PORTER L. HOWARD, farmer, Sections 1 and 12, P.O. Parkersville, was born in Genesee County, N. N., sic August 26, 1843, living there until he removed to Kansas in 1879. He enlisted in Company F, Twenty-eighth New York Infantry, in May, 1861, serving two years in that regiment, when he was veteranized sic in the Second New York Mounted Rifles, acting as Commissary of the Regiment. He was with the Army of the Potomac, and was wounded at Cedar Mountain. After his discharge he returned to his home in New York and engaged in farming. He was married in Alabama, Genesee County, N. Y., May 31, 1866, to Miss Acasta G. Macomber. They have five children--George, Mary, Stella, Allie and Lila. Mr. H. has a fine farm of 200 acres on Section 12, and one in Parker Township, two miles west of Parkersville, 100 acres under cultivation, the balance in pasture and timber and otherwise very well improved. He deals in live stock to some extent, shipping quite a number of hogs and cattle, and is keeping on hand about fifty head of cattle. He makes a specialty of sheep and hogs, paying particular attention to the former. He is a member of the Masonic Lodge at Parkersville. In the fall of 1882 Mr. H. was elected County Commissioner from his district on the Republican ticket.

CHARLES N. HULL, Justice of the Peace, was born in St. Lawrence County, N. Y., June 7, 1845, moving with his parents to Marshall County, Ill., in 1851, and remaining there until 1870, when he went to Emerson, Iowa, where he engaged in general merchandising, and afterward at Logan, Iowa, where he engaged in the drug business, remaining there until 1879, when he removed to Kansas, locating on a farm two miles north of Parkersville. In 1881 he moved into the city and opened a real estate, loan and insurance office, which he still conducts, representing the Home Insurance Company of New York, Etna, Continental, Phoenix of Brooklyn, and Burlington, of Burlington, Iowa. He was elected Justice of the Peace in 1882, and still holds that office. He was married at Covington, Ohio, in March, 1870, to Miss Anna B. Thompson, a native of that place. He is a member of the A., F. & A.M. Lodge at Parkersville.

JOHN MOSER, manufacturer and dealer in harness, saddles, etc., was born in New Richmond, Ohio, January 19, 1859. In 1874 he went to Baltimore, Md., where he learned the trade of harness maker, which he has since followed. In 1879 he came to Kansas, locating at Parkersville, where he opened a harness store, manufacturing his stock of harness and doing a business and doing a business of $1,500 a year. He was married at Junction City, Kansas, January 1, 1882, to Miss Emma Bigger.

HON. CHARLES G. PARKER, farmer, Section 8, P. O. Parkersville, was born in Manchester County, Conn., May 9, 1820. He first passed through Kansas in 1849, with a government freight train on the way to Mexico. At that time Council Grove contained only four log houses. For nearly twenty years Mr. Parker continued freighting from Kansas City westward to New Mexico and Mexico, having a train of twenty-six wagons and thirty men. In 1866 he quit freighting and purchased his present farm, where he has since resided. His farm consists of four hundred acres bordering on the little city of Parkersville, which was named in honor of the man on whose land it was located. The entire farm is bottom land, through which flows the Neosho River, all under fence, 200 acres under cultivation, 100 acres in timber and the rest pasture. The other improvements are very good, consisting of a large and well finished two-story stone house and good frame barn. In 1873 Mr. Parker built the Neosho River, and has since operated it. He has also been closely identified with various public measures. In 1872, was elected to the Legislature from Morris County, and served one term. He was married at Parkersville, January, 1882, to Miss Mattie Falls. Has a considerable amount of stock horses, cattle and hogs; twenty head of horses raised for farm purposes, forty head of grade Short-horn, and 100 head of hogs.

C. G. PARKER & CO., proprietors of the Neosho River Mill. This mill was built in 1873 by C. G. Parker, who has since operated it, and it has four run of buhrs, and a capacity of 120 barrels of flour every twenty-four hours. It is now run about twelve hours per day, grinding about 3,000 bushels of grain per month. It is two and a half stories high, besides basement, and operated by steam. J. H. Leedy was born in Rockingham County, Va., April 9, 1846, living until 1866, when he removed to Cole County, Mo., where he followed the trade of millwright and miller, introducing the latest improved machinery into some of the best mills, until 1870, when he moved to Council Grove, where he built the two flouring mills, operating each a short time after building it. At the end of six years he began contracting and building, which he followed until associating with C. G. Parker. He was married at Fort Scott, in June, 1880, to Miss Jennie Longacre. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church.

ARTHUR POOLE, clerk, was born at Crewe, in the county of Cheshire, England, August 10, 1856. He came to Kansas in 1870 with his parents, locating on a farm three miles north of Parkersville. For several years he remained on the farm with his father. During the past five years he has been employed as a clerk in the store of A. J. Eastman at Parkersville. He was married at Parkersville May 19, 1881, to Miss Florence Rouse, daughter of David and Margaret Rouse.

FRANCIS M. SETH, proprietor of the Western House, was born in Beaver Co., Pa., June 16, 1840, going to Scioto County, where he resided until the fall of 1870, when he moved to Kansas, locating in the southeast corner of Parker Township, engaging in farming until the early part of 1882, when he purchased the Western House, the only hotel in Parkersville. It contained nine sleeping rooms, with facilities for accommodating twelve to fifteen guests. In addition to these are the family rooms, dining-room, office, etc. Mr. S. was married at Scioto County, Ohio, July 23, 1869, to Miss Emma Reiniger. They have two children--Ellsworth and Charles. At the breaking out of the civil war, Mr. Seth was among the first to take up arms in defense of the Union, enlisting in 1861 in Company G, Fifty-sixth Infantry, and served until the close in the Army of the Southwest, taking part in the various battles, and around Vicksburgh, where he was wounded. After the capture of Vicksburg he was sent to New Orleans, under Gen. Banks, remaining in that department until discharged. He is a member of the I.O.O.F.

JOSEPH TAGUE, dealer in live stock, was born in County Antrim, Ireland, in 1840. He there learned the butcher business, which he followed until a few years ago. He first came to America in 1865, remaining only a short time, and then returned to Ireland. In 1870 he immigrated to America, stopping a short time in Chicago, and in 1871, came to Morris County, locating first at Camden, but shortly afterward moved to Parkersville, where he has since resided, engaged in dealing in live stock and farming. During the past five years he has devoted his attention to raising and shipping stock, chiefly cattle and hogs, shipping over 300 head of cattle and 1,600 head of hogs per year. Keeps an average herd of 160 head. He has a farm of 500 acres in Clark's Creek Township on Section 1, Township 2, Range 34, a part in cultivation and the rest in pasture. Besides this, he rents a section of land for grazing purposes. He was married at Parkersville, in November, 1877, to Miss Clara Carter. They have two children--Mary and Julia.

V. C. WELCH, proprietor and editor of the Morris County Enterprise. The paper was established January 1, 1878, by D. O. McCray, is Republican in politics, and issued every Thursday. On the first day of July of that year it passed into the hands of V. C. Welch, who has since published it, making it one of the best county papers published in the State. V. C. Welch was born at Fairfield, Iowa, August 3, 1855. During the following year his parents moved to Knoxville, remaining until 1861, when they removed to Osceola, where he received the first rudiments of an education. In the winter of 1862-63, his father, Dr. S. S. Welch, enlisted in the Eighteenth Iowa Infantry, serving until the war had closed. After the latter's return from the army, he removed to Kingston, Mo., where the subject of this sketch learned the printer's trade, which he has since followed, except a term of two years, which he spent in completing an academic course. He came to Kansas to reside permanently in 1877, locating at Hartford, where he was connected with the Hartford Enterprise until the Morris County Enterprise was established at Parkersville, of which he was foreman, until he became publisher. He is a member of the A., F. & A.M. Lodge at Parkersville. He was married at Hartford, Kan., January 22, 1879, to Miss Laura Medaris. They have one child--Perl.

[TOC] [part 12] [part 10] [Cutler's History]