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


[TOC] [part 17] [part 15] [Cutler's History]


In the winter of 1870, John Haufbauer owned eighty acres of land in Section 12, Township 29, Range 1 east, platted. By agreement he subsequently withdrew forty acres, and J. H. Minnich joined him, adding about the same amount. Mr. Haufbauer had previously built a house and rented it to Schlicter & Smith for a general merchandise store, who failed, however, to comply with their part of the agreement, and the building was leased to Neelee & Vance, who filled it with goods. The same year a ferry boat was started, and a blacksmith and wagon shop erected, followed by another store for general merchandise, and a drug store. In 1872 a large schoolhouse was built, the Methodist Episcopal and Union Sabbath schools organized, and a grocery store and hotel opened. In 1873, a bridge across the river took the place of the ferry boat. The town improved slowly until the completion of the railroad thereto, July, 1879, when it received a new impetus. The depot was completed in November, 1879, and during the winter following another bridge was constructed, the old one having been washed away by the flood of 1877. On the last of March, 1879, a portion of the town was consumed by fire, but it has been rapidly rebuilt. In September following, the Town Company was reorganized, the railroad company becoming interested. Derby is the second town in the county. The original name of the town was El Paso.


S. W. McCOY, attorney, was born in 1813, in Greene County, O., son of John an Ann Wade McCoy, was married in 1835 to Miss Charlotte Pollock, daughter of Robert and Mary Pollock, has two children, Mary A. and John W., wife died in 1839; was married in 1848 to Miss Anna Stewart. She died, 1870; was married in 1874 to Mrs. Lucinda Galloway Mounts, daughter of James and Nancy Galloway. She had one child by former marriage, James F. which has been adopted by Mr. McCoy. Came to Kansas in 1873, located at Wichita, engaged in practice of law. In 1874 was burned out losing his entire library, clothing etc. He then moved to El Paso, and has been engaged in farming and the practice of law from that time. He was educated in Greene County, O., commenced reading the law in 1846, was admitted to practice in 1856, has been Justice of the Peace in El Paso for two years, is member of the School Board, and Treasurer of the school district, is Notary Public, was deputy Provost Marshal during the late war, made the enrollment of five townships in Mercer County, Ill., is a member of the United Presbyterian Church. Took the census in Greene County, O., in 1856.

H. C. TUCKER, physician and surgeon, farmer, Section 14, P. O. Derby was born in Chester County, Pa., in 1833, son of John and Mary A. Tucker. He married in 1861, Miss Mary J. Clark, daughter of Justin and Mary Minnick Clark. They have two children, Marietta and Robert H. Mr. Tucker was educated at New Philadelphia and New Hagerstown, Ohio, commenced the study of medicine in 1855 with Dr. E. P. Buel, attended lectures at the National Medical College in Washington, D. C., in 1858 and 1859, and commenced the practice of medicine in 1859. He was in the War of the Rebellion, enlisting in 1864, in the One Hundred and Sixty-first Ohio Volunteer, Company A. He was made Assistant Surgeon of the Regiment, served in that capacity until September 1864, when he was mustered out of the service. He came to Kansas in 1871, and located on his farm which he still owns. He has been engaged in farming and the practice of medicine since that time. He also owns a residence and drug store at El Paso. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church, and of Wichita Lodge, No. 99, A, F. & A. M., of El Paso Lodge, No. 112. I. O. O. F., and of Encampment. No. 53, of the Old Settlers' Association. He has been Postmaster of El Paso for eight years.

BENJAMIN H. WARD, lumber dealer and merchant, was born in Tennessee in 1844; son of Jonathan and Elizabeth Patten Ward. Was married in 1870, to Miss Lydia J. Butts, daughter of Archibell and Martha Butts. Has four children - Emmit, Asa D., Morris and an infant. Came to Kansas in 1859; located near Spring Hill, Miami County; engaged in farming until 1871, when he removed to Butler County and engaged in contracting and building; remained until 1882, when he moved to El Paso, Sedgwick County, and engaged in the lumber business, and also a partner in the general merchandising business of F. M. Tong & Co., who carry a full line of goods.


Valley Center was surveyed into town lots in 1872. It is located on the railroad, on the banks of the Little Arkansas, about twelve miles north of Wichita. It has a postoffice, three stores, two blacksmith shops, considerable storage capacity for grain, and several dwelling-houses. Its principal proprietors are John Carpenter and son.


WILLIAM N. AYRES, M. D., physician and surgeon and farmer, P. O. Valley Center, was born in Ohio, in 1811; son of William and Elizabeth Ayres. Was married in 1836, to Miss Evaline H. Hanger, daughter of Martin and Elizabeth Hanger. Has two children - William W. and Augusta Ayres, now Mrs. Rose. He has buried eight children. At the age of sixteen he left Ohio for Louisville, Ky., and soon after commenced to read medicine. Attended lectures at the Louisville Medical University, where he graduated in the class of 1844. His first practice of medicine was in 1834, and has made it his life work. After thirteen years removed to Illinois, where he practiced for thirty-four years. Came to Kansas in 1882. After a short time spent at the residence of his son, on his farm in Park Township, he located at Valley Center and engaged in the practice of his profession. In April of this year established the drug business in company with his grandson, Wm. P. Ralph, under the firm name of Ayres & Ralph. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church and the Masonic Fraternity. He is past master of A., F. & A. M., having occupied the position of worshipful master two terms. Has been Justice of the Peace and Sheriff of Hardin County, Ill. Was Representative from Hardin and Gallatin counties to the Illinois Legislature in 1871-72.

W. W. AYRES, Section 26, Park Township, P. O. Valley Center, son of Dr. William N. Ayres, was born in Indiana in 1838. Was married in 1861, to Miss Catharine Drum, daughter of Mary and Jacob Drum; has two children - George and William. His wife died in 1870. Was married in 1871 to Miss Mariah Baldwin, daughter of John and Manerva H. Baldwin; has four children - Evaline, Laura M., Manerva and John. Came to Kansas in 1880; located in Park Township, on the farm where he now resides; owns eighty acres; engaged in farming. Is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church also of the Masonic fraternity, A., F. & A. M. and the I. O. O. F., Sedgwick Lodge No. 177. Has been a teacher for twenty-seven years before coming to Kansas; commenced at the age of sixteen. Was County Superintendent of Public Instruction of Harden County, Ill., for eight years, and Deputy Sheriff of that county for the same length of time, and Sheriff for two years.

C. P. BAKER, farmer, Section 34, P. O. Sunnydale, was born in Washington County, N. Y., in 1821; son of Ezekiel and Sally Baker. Was married in 1845, to Miss Mary A. Kenyan; has six children - Charles D., Madelia H., Daniel A., Joseph E., Frank H. and Erwin. Wife died in 1858. Was married in 1873, to Mrs. Clara Beach nee Dewine; she has one child by her former husband - Hattie Beach, and one by her last marriage - Cassini Baker. Mr. B. came to Kansas in 1870; located on the farm on which he now resides, containing eighty acres, of which sixty-eight are under cultivation. He was in the army during the late war; enlisted in 1861, in the Thirty-sixth Regiment Illinois Volunteers, Company A; was in the battles of Pea Ridge, Perryville, Stone River, Kenesaw Mountain, Franklin and Nashville; was slightly wounded at Pea Ridge; had seven ball holes through his clothing; was taken prisoner, but succeeded in making his escape and joined his command; was mustered out in 1864. Is a member of the Garfield Post No. 25, G. A. R., and of the Old Settlers' Association of Sedgwick County. Settled in the township before its organization. Mr. and Mrs. Baker were the first couple married in Grant Township. Mr. Baker is a descendant of the Bakers and Pattens of Rhode Island, and of English and Irish extraction.

J. C. BAXTER, farmer, Section 2, P. O. Sunnydale, was born in Harrison County, Ohio, in 1834, son of John and Lucinda Baxter. He was married in 1854, to Miss Rosina Zelliner, daughter of Jacob and Susannah Zelliner. Has seven children - Arabell, Loffness C., Alanda, Emerillis, Emma E., Alfrieda A., and Davis J. He came to Kansas in 1871, located on the farm on which he now resides, containing 160 acres, 100 of which are in cultivation, which yields him a good average of wheat, oats and corn. He has a good orchard of 500 fruit trees now in bearing and a fine grove of about two acres of forest trees. Mr. Baxter enlisted in Company K, Eighty-eighth Regiment, Ohio Volunteers, in 1863. Was detailed on entering the service as prison steward, served in that capacity until the close of the war. He is a member of the Baptist Church, and Trustee. Settled in the Township before its organization. He has served on the School Board of his district for six years.

DWIGHT BEACH, carpenter and builder, was born in Orleans County, Vt., in 1850, son of Solomon and Harriet Beach; was married, in 1869 to Miss Pyra Spinks, daughter of Richard and Jane Spinks; has one child - Pearl Beach. Came to Kansas in 1870, located in Kechi Township, engaged in farming, remained for two years, then moved to Harvey County, where he remained for five years, then returned to Kechi Township, this county, and remained two years, then moved to Valley Center, Grant Township, where he still resides. He has been engaged in the mercantile business for the last three years. In 1883 he sold his business and is now engaged at his trade, which is that of a carpenter. He has been successful in his farming and other pursuits. Owns a farm of eighty acres, sixty acres of which are under cultivation, and a house and two lots in Valley Center.

S. H. BRITAIN, farmer, Section 28, P. O. Sunnydale, was born in Pennsylvania, in 1827, is a son of James and Relief Britain. Was married in 1859 to Miss Mary A. McIntosh, daughter of Alexander and Rachel McIntosh. Has three children - Frank L., Albert P. and Loree L. Britain. Came to Kansas in the fall of 1868, remained one year and a half in Topeka, and then removed to Burlingame, and in December, 1870, located on his present farm of 160 acres, 100 of which are in cultivation, and twelve in forest trees, eight acres devoted to an orchard of assorted fruits and one acre in blackberries. His residence is surrounded by fine shade trees, rendering it very attractive. His average grain yield is: corn, 35; wheat, 12, and oats, 40 bushels per acre. Mr. Britain enlisted in Company K, One Hundred and Sixty-ninth Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers, and was mustered out after ten months' service. Was educated for a physician, and after leaving the army practiced several years at Hayfield, Crawford Co., Penn., but private reasons induced him to abandon the profession and move West. Was one of the organizers of Grant Township. Has been three years Director of the School Board of his district, and was elected Township Trustee in February, 1882.

H. C. BOYLE, farmer, Section 31, P. O. Valley Center, was born in Putnam County, Ill., in 1846, son of David and Lavina Boyle. Was married, in 1869, to Miss Lydia T. Morris, daughter of Edward and Hannah Morris. Has two children - Orvil A. and Myron D. Boyle. Came to Kansas, in 1876, from Illinois, purchased the farm on which he now resides, consisting of 240 acres, 160 of which are under cultivation; corn and wheat are his principal crops, which have invariably yielded well. He keeps about forty head of cattle of high grade Short-horn, and fifty hogs of Poland-China breed. Mr. B. is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and is church and district steward. Is a member of the Arkansas Valley Agricultural Association of Sedgwick County, was Director, and in 1882, was Assistant Superintendent of the Society. His farm joins the town site of Valley Center. Has a good orchard now in bearing, and a variety of small fruit. Has a grove of forest trees of about two acres surrounding his residence.

E. C. CARNAHAN, merchant and farmer, Section 27, was born in Logan County, Ill., in 1860, son of M. C. and Lodema Carnahan; single. Came to Kansas in 1876 with his parents; located in Grant Township, engaged in farming, remained six years; then associated with L. C. Waller, and established the hardware business, under the firm name of Carnahan & Waller, and is now carrying a full line of hardware and all kinds of farming implements; owns the building in which he business is located, 20 x 40 feet, and an agricultural warehouse, 20 x 40 feet; the business has increased about 50 per cent since its establishment; owns a farm of eighty acres, on which he keeps stock. Is a member of the Christian Church. L. C. Waller, of the firm of Carnahan & Waller, was born in Wayne County, Ind., in 1848; is a son of Frederick and Christina Waller. Was married in 1877, to Miss Sarah B. Westfall, daughter of John and Sarah Westfall; has one child - Myrtle E. Waller. Came to Kansas in 1882, located at Valley Center; owns a farm of eighty acres, engaged in stock raising; has recently established the hardware business in connection with E. C. Carnahan; the firm has a very fine trade, surrounded as they are by as fine a farming community as there is in the county. Is a member of the Christian Church. Was Supervisor of Platt County, Ill., held the office two years.

J. T. CARPENTER, farmer, Section 36, and dealer in coal, lumber, etc., P. O. Valley Center, was born in Pennsylvania, in 1823. Is a son of Asa and Catharine Carpenter, who were natives of Pennsylvania, and moved to Du Page County, Ill., when the subject of this sketch was twelve years of age. At the age of twenty, he was married to Miss Eliza Emerson. In 1850, with his wife and child, went to California, going by the overland route, to try his fortunes among the vicissitudes of the land of gold, where he remained for five years, during which time he was successful and succeeded in accumulating $10,000, but was overwhelmed with grief at the death of his wife and child. In 1855, he returned to Illinois, where he was engaged in farming until he came to Kansas in 1870. In 1855, he was married to Miss Sarah Hudson, daughter of the Rev. James and Rebecca Hudson. He has three children by the last marriage - Horace, Clara and Arthur Carpenter. On coming to Kansas he located on a farm on the Little Arkansas River, in Park Township, this county, but subsequently removed to Wichita, where he was engaged in the grain business for four years. He then removed to his farm, on which he has since resided, consisting of 500 acres, located in Grant and adjoining townships, 350 acres of which are under cultivation. In 1878, he laid out the town site of Valley Center, from a portion of his farm. Since moving to this farm he has devoted his time to the interests of his farm, and has also been engaged in the coal and lumber business and buying grain. Has been successful in all his business ventures, and has acquired a competency which he is now enjoying in his declining years as the result of his energy and business ability. He was elected County Commissioner in 1873, serving one term of two years, and re-elected in 1875, and served another term, during which time he assisted in organizing over one half of the townships of Sedgwick County. Has never been an aspirant for office, studiously avoiding all, excepting the one mentioned, but has ever been a zealous worker for the public interest's of the communities in which he has lived. He is a director and stockholder of the Citizens Bank of Wichita. Is a Free-will Baptist. Was deacon of the church for twenty years before coming to Kansas. Is a member of the Old Settlers' Association of Sedgwick County. He is an earnest temperance man, never having used tobacco or stimulants in his lifetime, not even to the extent of drinking a glass of beer. His son, Arthur, who is associated with him in business, was born in Illinois in 1861. Was married in 18881, to Miss Della Sherman. Has one child - Ray Carpenter. Was appointed R. R. agent at Valley Center, in 1879, for the A., T. & S. F. Co., and in 1882 for the St. Louis & San Francisco R. R., which office he held until 1883, when he resigned on account of other business. He was appointed Postmaster of Valley Center in 1881, which office he now holds. Mr. Carpenter's son-in-law, A. C. Race, station agent at Valley Center, was born in Wisconsin, in 1856. Is a son of Calvin and Annis Race. Was married in 1880, to Miss Clara Carpenter, daughter of the subject of this sketch. He located in Grant Township, in 1879, engaged in the grocery business for two years. Received the appointment of agent for the R. R. Co., in February of the present year.

STEPHEN P. DAVISON, farmer, section 2, P. O. Sunnydale owns 160 acres, 95 acres under cultivation, with small orchard and good frame dwelling. Has two horses, four cows and 12 hogs. He came to Kansas in 1877 and located here. Was born in Illinois, January 19, 1841, and came from his native State to Kansas. Enlisted in May, 1861, in the Sturgis Rifles, of Chicago, an independent organization, and served as a body-guard to Gen. McClellan; was relieved from command of the army and was discharged. Re-enlisted, February 9, 1865, in Company D, One Hundred and Forty-seventh Regiment Illinois Volunteers, and was with his command in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama, doing provost duty and assisting U. S. Marshals, etc., and was discharged February 8, 1866. He married, in 1863, Miss Emma McLaughlin. They have two children - Georgia A. and Lucy E. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

ALONZO J. FINCH, blacksmith, was born in Rensselaer County, N. Y., in 1840. Is a son of Lewis and Mary Finch. Was married, in 1866, to Miss Maggie French. His wife died in 1867. He was married, in 1871, to Miss Annie E. Brooks, daughter of Joseph H. and Emily Brooks. Has two children - Willie E. and Laura E. Finch; buried two infants. Came to Kansas in 1872; located at Hutchinson, Reno County; remained three years, engaged in farming and blacksmithing, then returned to New York, and there remained until 1879, engaged at his trade, then removed to Illinois and remained for three years, when he returned to Kansas and located at Valley Centre, establishing himself in business. Is successor to A. Clark. He owns his shop with two lots, a good residence with three lots, and six business lots. His business has increased about 150 per cent since his location at Valley Centre. He was in the late war. Enlisted in 1862 in the Forty-third Regiment N. Y. Volunteer Infantry, Company G, Second Battalion, Second Division, Sixth Army Corps attached to the Army of the Potomac. Was in the battle of Fredericksburg, and other engagements of his command. Was wounded at Fredericksburg by a shell, on the 13th day of December, 1662[sic]. Was disabled from further service, and was discharged by Surgeon's certificate of disability in May, 1863. Is a member of the Second Advent Church, Masonic Fraternity, Knights of Pythias and the National Union.

[TOC] [part 17] [part 15] [Cutler's History]