KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS

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


SHAWNEE COUNTY, Part 20

[TOC] [part 21] [part 19] [Cutler's History]

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES (COTTER - CUTLER).

DR. J. R. COTTER, of the Allopathic (old school) School of Medicine, came to Kansas December 17, 1879, and located in Parkdale, Topeka, from Brownsville, Mo. Was born in Washington County, Pa., January 2, 1828, and when a boy three years of age, moved with his parents to Carroll County, Ohio. Remained there until 1850, and read medicine with Dr. S. M. Stockon, a graduate of Jefferson, Philadelphia, and Bellevue, New York hospital. Attended one course of lectures at Cincinnati Medical College. During the winter of 1854, when his course was about two-thirds completed, was called home by sickness, and did not return. Commenced practice at Dundee, Tuscarawas County, Ohio, in 1849, where he remained about two years, and removed to Kossuth, Ohio, remaining in that section of the State for sixteen years. In the spring of 1865 he removed to Brooklyn, Iowa, where he remained ten years in active practice, and removed from Brooklyn to Brownsville, Mo., where he remained five years, and came to Topeka. Was proffered the position of first surgeon of One Hundred and Eighteenth Ohio Volunteers at the commencement of the war, but refused it. Was married April 25, 1850, in New Hagerstown, Carroll Co., Ohio, to Miss Martha I. Stockon, niece of Dr. Stockon. Mrs. Cotter was born in Chautauqua County, N. Y., November 10, 1835, and when ten years of age moved with her parents to New Hagerstown, Ohio, where her father kept store for several years, and moved to Muscatine, Iowa, where he remained until the time of his death, in September, 1862. They have four sic children living: Chas. R., now in the employ of the C., R. I. & P. R. R. at Brooklyn, Iowa; Cornelia E.; Almer, now Mrs. Gilmore, of Topeka; Ethel A., now Mrs. Prentiss, of Sedalia, Mo.; and Earnest G. Dr. Cotter is a member of the I.O.O.F. Deep Cut Lodge, No. 1818, Deep Cut, Ohio.

M. COUNCIL, contractor and builder. Came to Kansas April 3, 1867, from Lafayette, Ind. Enlisted in the army in August, 1862, at Thornton, Ind., in Company D., Seventy-second Indiana, mounted Infantry. Was with his command at Chickamauga, and was in Sherman's campaign of 1864, and Wilson's raid through Georgia and Alabama in 1865. Was mustered out in July, 1865, at Indianapolis, Ind. The command of which Mr. Council was a member were sic engaged in the pursuit and capture of Jeff. Davis. Was married in February, 1868, at Frankfort, Ind., to Miss Mary J. Bell of that place, and has six children: Abram, Justin, Ida, Earnest, Lucy, and Cora. Was born in Marion County, Ind., July 27, 1840. Remained in native place about five years, and removed with his parents to Hamilton County, Ind. Remained there about five years, and removed to Clinton County, where he remained about four years, and moved to Boone County, where he remained about eight years, working at his trade. After his return from the service went to Lafayette, and remained until coming to Kansas. Is a member of the Kaw Valley Lodge, No. 20, A.O.U.W.

SEPTIMUS M. COURSEY, plain and ornamental plasterer. Came to Kansas March 22, 1879, and located in Norton County, Kansas, where he homesteaded 160 acres on Section 23, Town 5, Range 22 west, where he farmed and worked at his trade until coming to Topeka. Came to Kansas from Grundy County, Iowa. Was born in Frederick Co., Md., March 5, 1849. Resided in his native county a short time, and lived in Pennsylvania and Virginia. His father, Rev. Wm. R. Coursey, was a prominent United Brethren minister, a member of the first English church of that name, and for several years presiding elder. Rev. Mr. Coursey died July 1, 1881, in Washington County, Md. Young Coursey enlisted February 8, 1864, in Mountville, Lancaster Co., Pa., in Battery G., Second Pennsylvania Veterans Heavy Artillery, as a gunner. First three months, lay in Forts Lincoln and Ethan Allen at Washington. Then joined the Army of the Potomac under Gen. Grant at Cold Harbor, Va. Went to the front of Petersburgh, and participated in the bombardment. Remained there until August, and were ordered to Bermuda Hundred, and then went north of the James. Participated in the capture of Chapman's farm, September 29, 1864. The same day were repulsed at Fort Gregg. Laid there until January 1st, and returned to Bermuda Hundred, and remained until the surrender of Petersburg, and entered the city the second day after the surrender, and then garrisoned the city and adjacent counties until Lee's surrender. Was mustered out at City Point, Va., January 29, 1866. Resided a year at Foreston, Noble Co., Ill. Removed from there to New Hartford, Butler Co., Iowa, where he remained two years, working at his trade, and removed to Eldora, Hardin County, and remained five months. Then lived in Grundy County until May 9, 1870, when he was married to Miss Sarah E. Weatherly, a native of Owen County, Ind., and then removed to Marshall County, where he resided five years; and in 1875 moved back to Grundy County where he remained until coming to Kansas. Have five children: David F., Fred W., Harvey M., Harry P., and Muriel. Is a member of Liscom Lodge, No. 242, I.O.O.F., Liscom, Marshall Co., Iowa. Mr. Coursey has had large experience in his line, and does plain plastering, whitewashing, calsomining, cementing, and ornamental work, such as centers and cornices.

JESSE COX, market gardener, Section 28, P. O. Topeka. Owns five acres one-half a mile east of the city limits. Came to Kansas in February, 1865, locating on his present place. Has followed nothing but gardening; has made a good living for his family, erected a good house and made other improvements costing over $2,000, all off these five acres. Was born in England in February, 1812. Came to the United States March 4, 1845, locating in Greenbush, N. Y. In 1850 removed to Cleveland, Ohio; from Cleveland to Topeka, Kan., in 1865. He was married in 1832 to Miss Mary Hobley, from the city of Coventry. They have nine children--Jane, Caroline, John, Daniel, David, George, William H., Charles E. and Arthur F. He is a member of the Episcopal Church.

[Picture of Dr. Franklin L. Crane] DR. FRANKLIN L. CRANE, one of the oldest citizen of Topeka, was born January 10, 1808, at East Windsor, Hartford Co., Conn. When a youth of sixteen he went to Hartford, Conn., and for four years was employed as a clerk, afterwards studying and practicing dental surgery in the office of Dr. John W. Crane, in the same city. When the details of his profession were thoroughly mastered, he removed to Easton, Pa., residing in that city engaged in the practice of dentistry from 1832 until he emigrated to Kansas in 1854. In the latter part of 1854, Dr. Crane visited the present site of Topeka, returned to Pennsylvania for the winter, and in the early part of 1855 took up his permanent residence in the then embryo town. He was a prominent and most generous member of the Town Association, often sacrificing his personal interests for the advantage of his adopted home. In 1859 the Topeka Cemetery was platted by him, and surveyed by himself and Loring Farnsworth upon what was then his own ground, and afterwards beautified and made a pleasant and attractive spot through the efforts of Dr. Crane. During the same year he was acting Mayor of the city, and his influence was exerted wisely and judiciously to make Topeka the seat of Government. To all the early public enterprises looking to the welfare of the city he freely gave his influence, his time and his money. He was a zealous adherent of the Free-state party and a candidate for Senator in the first Free-state Legislature, being defeated by three votes. At the breaking out of the Rebellion he enlisted in Company E, Eleventh Kansas Infantry, serving three years in the Army of the Frontier--a part of the time acting as hospital Steward, and having charge of the small-pox hospital at Hildebrand Mills, Indian Territory. After his return from the army he was chosen President of the Board of Education, and, aside from public duties, gave his attention to the management of his real estate interests. At that time Dr. Crane owned one quarter section within the present city limits, and at different times has donated generously of his domain to further public enterprises in the city--the five acres on which the A., T. & S. F. R. R. is built and the five acres of the first foundry and iron works of the city being his gift. Dr. Crane was married in October, 1838, to Miss Mary Elizabeth Howell. Four sons were born to them--Jesse H., Franklin L., David O. and George W. Franklin L. died at Fort Larned during the war. The Doctor is a member of the Masonic Order and the I.O.O.F. of Topeka. His name is honorably identified with the early struggles of the A., T. & S. F. R. R. Co., with the journalism of the city and with nearly every enterprise calculated to promote the interests or insure the prosperity of the city he has helped to build.

GEORGE W. CRANE, was born in Easton, Northampton Co., Pa., August 25, 1843. His early education was such as the schools of Easton afforded. In 1853 he went to Hamilton, Canada; where he remained ten years, during the time he completed his education at the Central School, of that city, and served three years apprenticeship in the nursery and florist business. At the age of nineteen he went to Windsor, Canada. He served as a clerk for some eighteen months and for a few months after ran a ferry between Windsor and Detroit. In March, 1865, he came to Topeka, where his father, Dr. Crane, had made his home for some ten years previous. After a short time he went to Fort Larned and remained as a clerk in the sutler's store, owned by his brother, for a year, then returned to Topeka where he engaged in market gardening for two years on the ground where the A., T. & S. F. R. R. depot now stands. November 1, 1868, he first engaged in the manufacture of blank books and legal and commercial forms, etc., in partnership with J. Y. Byron, under the firm name of Crane & Byron. The business was continued until 1872. During this time, although the business increased, the firm was subjected to a fire which seriously crippled their business. The firm dissolved in 1872, since which time Mr. Crane has conducted the business alone, with the exception of two years, 1879-1881, when E. Kimber had a seventh interest in the business. The business is now on a firm basis and the house ranks among the first of its kind in the West. The large building in which the manufactory is located is owned by Mr. Crane. The variety of work done embraces the manufacture of blank books, printing, binding, stereotyping, seal engraving, publishing law books, records and blanks of all forms, etc., etc. The business annually done exceeds $100,000, giving employment to some thirty-five operators. In July 1869, he purchased a third interest in the Topeka Commonwealth, including the State printing, the firm being Prouty, Davis & Crane. He disposed of his interest in the firm to his father, Dr. F. L. Crane, in 1871, since which time he has confined himself exclusively to his manufacturing interest. Mr. Crane is a member of the A.F. & A.M., the A.O.U.W. and K. of H. He is as well known and as favorably identified with the business interests of the city as any old resident of the city. Mr. Crane married June 15, 1870, Ella Rain, a native of Elkhart, Ind., and daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Silas Rain. This amiable, beautiful and gifted woman died April 13, 1881, leaving two children--Frank S. and Edna. November 7, 1882, Mr. Crane married Miss Fannie Kiblinger of Elkhart, Ind., a cousin of his first wife, their mothers being sisters.

L. M. CRAWFORD, proprietor of the new Topeka Opera House and Crawford's Hotel, was born at Mount Pleasant, Vinton Co., Ohio, July 24, 1845. Prior to coming to Topeka, Kan., November 16, 1858, he resided for two years in each of the following towns in Ohio: Chillicothe, Columbus and Zeleska, coming from the latter place to Topeka. He learned the printers' trade here, and had charge of the circulation of the Commonwealth for some time; being in the newspaper business he was brought intimately in contact with the managers of various amusement organizations, and he frequently played them here on shares. In April, 1880, he bought Costa's Opera House, and after remodeling it he conducted it until it was destroyed by fire, Dec. 2, 1880. He immediately constructed an entirely new house on the site of that which was burned, and in September, 1881, he opened it to the public; later he finished it to its present complete shape, it being one of the handsomest and most convenient opera houses in the West. It has a seating capacity of about 1,000, contains two galleries and four private boxes. His hotel which is connected with the Opera House, has accommodations for fifty guests. Mr. Crawford has recently secured the site of a magnificent Opera House at Atchison, southeast corner of Fourth street and Kansas avenue. The plans for construction are now being perfected by the architects. It is the intention of Mr. Crawford to erect a ground floor theater, fifty-three feet frontage, 131 feet in depth, stage to be 35x53, a hall basement which shall be adapted to banqueting, dancing, skating and other purposes where a smooth floor may be required. Mr. Crawford is one of the most enterprising manager sic to be found in the West. He was married at Topeka, January 15, 1869, to Mary E. Wright, a native of Ohio. They have five children--Orlin Thurston, Chester Park, Bertha Eleanor, Albert Roy and an infant daughter Edith.

CROSBY BROTHERS, dry goods merchants, established August, 1880, at 177 Kansas avenue, where they are still located. During the busy seasons they give employment to ten clerks. Their business is almost exclusively retail. The firm is composed of Wm. T. Crosby and E. H. Crosby, Jr. Wm. T., was born in Mansfield, La., December 20, 1852, spent two years and a half at the High School of Hartford, Conn., and when he was about seventeen years of age he went to New Orleans, where he thoroughly learned the dry goods business, being connected with the wholesale establishment of Yale & Bowling for ten years, leaving their employ and coming to Topeka in 1880. E. H. Crosby was born in Mansfield, La., November 8, 1856; lived in his native place until he was thirteen years of age; he then went to Hartford, Conn., where he attended the High School for three years, then located in St. Louis, where he was in the employ of Crow, Hargadine & Co., wholesale merchants, for a period of eight years, coming from that house to Topeka in August, 1880. He was married at St. Louis, November 11, 1880, to Helen Dieckriede, a native of that city. They have one child, Charles Bernard. Mr. Crosby is a member of the American Legion of Honor.

BISHOP CRUMRINE, attorney at law, was born in Washington County, Pa., February 9, 1841. He entered Jefferson College, Pennsylvania, in 1859, and remained there until the fall of 1861, when he enlisted in the Eighty-fifth Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers for three years. That regiment having the maximum number, he was not mustered in it, and in August, 1862, he enlisted again in Company G, Fourth Regiment Pennsylvania Artillery and was mustered out July 25, 1865, having been during his term of service on detached service a great part of the time. On his return from the army he read law with his brother Boyd Crumrine, of Washington, Pa., and was admitted to practice there in 1867. In October, 1868, he removed to Topeka, Kan., where he was engaged in surveying for about one year. He was then appointed as a Justice of the Peace to fill a vacancy for one year, and was then elected Justice of the Peace for one year. Since then he has been engaged in the practice of the law in that city. He was married in August, 1872, to Helen L. Adams, a native of Wellington, Ohio, their children being two daughters and one son--Ada E., Mabel O. and Harold B.

BENJAMIN M. CURTIS came to Kansas with his parents, Harvey W. and Sarah Curtis, in the fall of 1855. They located in Topeka Township two miles east of the present city, and there remained until about 1861, when they returned to Illinois. In 1870 they came again to Topeka, and now reside in Section 12, Topeka Township, one and one-half miles southwest of the city. Mr. H. W. Curtis was a member of the first Kansas Legislature. Benjamin M. Curtis spent his winters in Illinois, after his parents returned to Kansas, during the winter months, until 1874. In that year he graduated from McKendree College, and during the three succeeding winters was principal of a public school at Summerfield, Ill. In 1874 he commenced reading law, continuing his legal studies until he was admitted to the bar in the spring of 1878. He was then engaged in the practice of his profession until November, 1880, when he was elected Clerk of the District Court. Mr. Curtis was born at Paris, Edgar Co., Ill., September 3, 1851. On the 27th of August, 1874, he was married at Summerville, Saint Clair Co., Ill., to Adetia L. Peeples, a native of Summerville. They have buried two children, and have now living, Nellie and Grace, twins. Mr. Curtis is a member of A.F. & A.M., K. of P., and A.O.U.W.

CHARLES CURTIS, attorney, was born in North Topeka, January 20, 1860, and was educated in the public schools of Topeka and in the Quaker College at Council Grove, Morris County. He read law with A. H. Case, and at the age of eighteen had rights of majority conferred upon him by the District Court of Shawnee County to enable him to transact his own business. He was admitted to the bar June 9, 1881, certificate dated August 2, 1881, and has been in partnership with A. H. Case since August 9, 1881. He was admitted to practice in the United States Circuit and District Courts December 6, 1881, and to the Supreme Court of Kansas May 4, 1882. Mr. Curtis is largely interested in North Topeka property, both improved and unimproved. He was connected in 1878 as a reporter, and associate editor with the North Topeka Times, and was one of the proprietors of the Free Discussion, his brother-in-law, J. E. Layton, being the other member of the company which issued the two numbers of that paper.

O. A. CURTIS, was born in Vermillion County, Ind., June 1, 1829, and lived at Eugene until twenty-three years of age. He was married in Indiana in 1848, and by this marriage had two children, Harvey and John. In 1851 he moved to Platte County, Ill., remained there three years and returned to Indiana, his occupation being farming, hotel keeping and running flat boats. From Indiana he came direct to Kansas City, Kan., arriving April 1, 1856. He left that city the same month, to walk to the Quaker Mission, but night arrived before he reached his destination, and on account of his Free-state sentiments, he was not able to procure shelter for the night in a house. The night came on very dark, but by a flash of lightning he was able to find his way into the branches of a tree, where he remained through the night. In the morning he reached the Mission where he staid sic for rest and to dry his clothes, and then proceeded, still on foot, towards Lawrence, wading the swollen creeks, and stopping at night in the house of a friendly Indian. He reached Lawrence the next day, staid sic one night at the Cincinnati Hotel, and the following day went to work for Jenkins on land claimed by Jim Lane, and in consequence of which he afterward killed Jenkins. After working for Mr. Jenkins for two weeks, he left Lawrence, and went to Leavenworth City, remained there one day and went to Fort Leavenworth with the intention of enlisting in the regular army, but being disgusted with the way the soldiers were treated, he returned to Leavenworth, and the following day hired to a man at Kickapoo to break prairie. After working a month he returned to Kickapoo on Sunday, the day that Pardee Butler was sent down the Missouri River on a raft of logs, and other outrages were committed. Remarking that "it was a shame," he was heard by some of the Kickapoo Rangers, who threatened violence, and at the suggestion of a friend, he hastily left town on foot, crossed the Missouri River on the Burns' Brothers' ferry boat, and took the road from Weston to St. Joe, meeting Pro-slavery men on the way, who threatened to hang him if he helped the Kansas people. He worked for a short time on a farm, and afterwards with business firms, traveling in Missouri and Iowa, and finally returning to Kansas with P. B. Plumb, now senator from Kansas. The party obtained arms at Nebraska City, arrived at Topeka, September 25, 1856, when the company disbanded. He then went to work running a ferry boat for Lewis Pappan, and after six weeks at that, hauled saw logs for Covee till April, 1857. He then took a claim in Rochester, sold it out to Mr. Hiller, started a grocery on Soldiers' Creek, ran that two months, sold it out and went to running a ferry again for Pappan. February 1, 1858, he returned to his old home on a visit, came back in May of the same year, started a saloon and did a good business until the pontoon bridge was washed away. He then sold his saloon, re-established a ferry in company with Lewis Pappan, and in February, 1859, married Ellen Pappan, who died April, 1863. Their children are Charles and Elizabeth Curtis. In 1859, Mr. Curtis obtained a charter for his ferry boat, in which he retained an interest until 1865. In August, 1863, he raised a company of militia, of which he was in command a short time. He also raised Company F, of the Fifteenth Kansas Cavalry, of which he was mustered in at Leavenworth as Captain, in October, 1863. He was assigned to provost guard duty at Leavenworth, being in command of that Department. Afterward ordered West, and later to Topeka to protect the Legislature, where he remained until April, 1864. He was then ordered to report to George H. Hoyt, at Olathe, where he remained three weeks. In July, 1864, he was employed five days in scouting in Snye Hill. After the bushwackers were routed, he returned to Olathe. He was then ordered to Cold Water Grove to protect the border, on the line of Kansas and Missouri, with orders to report to Col. Jennison at Mound City. From there he was ordered to Bainsville on the border, and then into Missouri in search of Price. The forces of Gen. Blunt were at Hickman's Mills in Missouri. Capt. Curtis was ordered with his men southeast to reconnoiter. He went to the southeast of Lexington, and came back to within three miles of the city. While here, and being field officer of the day, Gen. Shelby's Division advanced toward Lexington, 8,000 strong. Capt. Curtis reported to Col. Jennison, his commanding officer, who ordered him to take two mountain howitzers, and hold the enemy as long as he could. He had but 150 men, but opened fire in a lane and was soon driven back. Gens. Lane and Blunt coming up, ordered him to take his company and go to a grove one mile to the left, and hold till he was re-inforced or ordered back. He held it till he was surrounded, and had to cut out the best way he could. He was neither re-inforced nor ordered back. He forced his way out through the rebels and every obstacle, and reached the command of Col. Moonlight, and remained with the Eleventh until after he was forced back from the crossing of the Little Snye. After the battles of the Big Blue and Westport, Captain Curtis, who was then at Kansas City, was ordered to take charge of a wagon supply train and follow the army down the border as far as Fort Scott. On arriving at Fort Scott, he reported to Col. Blair, and was ordered by him to take two companies and follow the army, which was then in Missouri, with a supply train of 200 wagons. He had a skirmish with bushwackers at Newtonia, and the next day reported to Gen. Curtis, turned the train over to the Quartermaster, and was ordered to report with his company to Col. Jennison. Capt. Curtis was with the pursuing army to the Arkansas. On his return to Fort Scott he obtained leave of absence for thirty days, and came to Topeka on business. On Christmas, the 25th of December, 1864, he was married at Olathe, Kansas, to Miss Lucy Jays. He returned to Fort Scott and took command of his company, was then ordered to Bainsville, Kansas, and in about two months, to Fort Leavenworth as a witness in the court martial of Major Lang. He then returned to his company, and was finally discharged in April, 1865. After his return to Topeka he ran a ferry one year, and in 1866 started a dry goods and grocery store which he ran about a year and sold to John Smith. He then commenced shipping cattle to St. Louis, in which business he remained about a year. In November, 1868, he went into the Nineteenth Kansas Cavalry as Quartermaster Sergeant, and was mustered out in April, 1869. In 1871 he went onto a farm in Jackson County, Kansas, where he remained a year, then re-commenced cattle shipping, in which he continued eight years, visiting all the large Eastern cities, but doing most of his business in St. Louis. In 1879 he went to Arkansas and contracted for wood, remaining until May 8, when he returned to North Topeka,. August 6, 1881, he went from North Topeka to Nebraska to work on the Missouri Pacific R. R., returning in October. The following month he went to Jefferson County to work on the L. T. & S. W. R. R., returning in February. March, 1882, he left Topeka for Florida via New Orleans, to look after a 5,000 acre land interest in that State, which did not prove a success. In May, 1882, he once more returned to Topeka, where he is now effectively engaged working in the interest of prohibition. Mr. Curtis has traveled through twenty-nine different States and nine Territories, is now fifty-three years of age, and has never been confined to his bed a day with sickness since his remembrance, a fact which speaks well for the climate of Kansas, and for the constitution of this pioneer of North Topeka. Wm. sic Curtis, founder of Eugene, or North Topeka, in the year 1865, was born in the State of New York in the year 1800, and died at North Topeka, Kansas, March 3, 1873. He was essentially a frontiersman of education and taste. He had always a desire to be in a new country, and so commenced his westward journey when quite a boy. Came to Kansas in 1860, and settled in North Topeka when it was nothing but a wilderness. He was liberal in his views, honorable in his transactions, generous, hospitable and kind, and through his earnestness North Topeka was greatly benefitted. Being the owner of most all the land in the city, he gave freely to the first churches and schoolhouses. We can safely say that no man has done so much for that city as he. Mrs. Ellen Curtis, daughter of Louis sic and Julia Pappan, was a quarter Indian, half French and a quarter American. Born in Shawnee County, Kan., in 1840, was married to Capt. O. A. Curtis in February, 1859. Died April, 1863, at North Topeka.

[Image of Geo. A. Cutler] DR. GEO. A. CUTLER. The subject of this sketch was the youngest son of Major Jervis Cutler, one of the early pioneers of Ohio, the grandson of Rev. Mannassah Cutler, D.D., LL.D., whose history is so closely interwoven with that of the State of Massachusetts, and of the northwest territory, and a nephew of Hon. Ephraim Cutler, of Ohio, to whose efforts more than to any other man, is due the salvation of that great State from the grasp of the slave power in her territorial organization. Dr. Cutler was born in Nashville, Tenn., December 25, 1832. He graduated in medicine at the University Medical College, of New York City, in 1853, and shortly afterward moved to Gentry County, Mo., where he commenced the practice of his profession. Upon the passage of the Kansas Nebraska bill, in May, 1854, he moved with the first settlers into the new Territory, and settled at Doniphan, which was then being laid out. This portion of the Territory was settled, in the main, by citizens of Missouri, many of whom, however, were Free-state men. Dr. C. entered actively upon the practice of his profession, and took no part in politics until after the invasion of the Territory from Missouri, at the first election for delegate to Congress, in November of that year. At this election one of his most intimate friends, whose only crime was that of being a Free-state man, was ruthlessly shot down. From that time he took a decided stand in favor of Free-state and free-speech. In the spring of 1855, he was selected by the Free-state party as a candidate for the first territorial legislature. Gen. J. H. Stringfellow, who afterward figured so conspicuously in the border troubles, was a candidate of the Pro-slavery party. Dr. Cutler canvassed the district, which was a very large one, and made speeches at every point. At Wolf River, and at Nemaha, large crowds of Missourians were collected, and he was told that any attempt to speak, would be to "sign his death warrant." He did speak, however, and perhaps the very effrontry sic in doing so did more to save him from the mob, than anything else. At the election the great mass of votes were cast by Missourians. At Doniphan they came--a veritable "army with banners," stacked their arms in front of the voting place, and took possession of the ballot box. Dr. Cutler received the entire Free-state vote, and Gov. Reeder sent him the certificate of election. Long before the meeting of the body it became apparent that it would be perfectly useless to take the long and expensive trip to Pawnee, and Dr. C. wisely stayed home. Dr. Cutler was next elected a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, which met at Topeka, October 23, 1855. Being a member of the Topeka Town Company, he concluded at the close of the Constitutional Convention to make that place his home; he opened an office there, and was one of the earnest workers in making that town the future capital of the State. January 15, 1856, he was elected Auditor of State under that constitution, his opponent being Hon. W. R. Griffith, afterward elected Superintendent of Public Institution. Dr. C. was a delegate to the Free-state convention, which met at Topeka, July 15th and 16th, and was again elected Auditor of State, August 9, 1857, his opponent this time being Hon. J. K. Goodin of Minneola. In the spring of 1859, he with a number of others, started a new town at the junction of the Cottonwood and Neosha, in what was then Breckenridge County. December 6, 1859, he was elected a member of the first State Legislature, from the counties of Osage, Breckenridge and Coffey, his opponent being Hon. J. M. Winchell. He was an active member of the body. During the early part of Mr. Lincoln's administration, Dr. Cutler was appointed United State Indian Agent for the Creeks, one of the most important positions in the Indian service. Immediately after receiving his appointment, Dr. Cutler started for his agency, but found that the Indian troubles in the Nation had culminated in a pitched battle, in which the Union Indians had been defeated, nearly all their wagons and ponies had been captured, and they had made a forced march to Kansas, barefoot and illy clad, in the most severe winter weather. Hundreds were left dead by the wayside. The suffering they endured can scarcely find a parallel in history. When Dr. Cutler found them they were on the Verdigris River in a starving condition, living on their ponies, dogs, and such roots as they could find. Much credit is due to the promptness and energy of the Superintendent of the Southern Agency, Hon. Wm. H. Coffin, whose efforts to ameliorate their suffering were ably seconded by Dr. Cutler. After the wants of the Indians were relieved, they were removed to the neighborhood of LeRoy, in Coffey County, where they went into camp. Dr. Cutler helped to organize the Indian regiments for the Union service, which were recruited mostly from the tribes under his charge. In the early part of the war he had nearly all of the Southern Indians to look after, and distributed, annually, provisions and clothing to the amount of hundreds of thousands of dollars. He was Indian agent during Mr. Lincoln's entire administration, but being an "Anti-Johnson man," he resigned soon after the latter's inauguration. While agent he took many delegations of Indians to Washington, and did much to alleviate their wants and place them in comfortable circumstances again. After quitting the Indian service, Dr. Cutler moved to Texas, and settled at Sherman. He there founded the Sherman Patriot, and was appointed printer for that district by Gov. Davis, the Republican Governor. When the M., K. & T. R. R. approached Texas, Hon. R. S. Stevens, the General Manager of that road, induced him to take hold of a new town that they intended building up, on Red River. He did so, and issued his new paper from a tent in the woods, named the new town Red River City (now Denison), and his paper the Red River Journal. The first copy of his paper he printed with the head lines in red ink, and the "red headed" newspaper was commented upon by nearly all the papers of the country. In six months time the new town had 5,000 inhabitants, a growth unprecedented. Hon. F. P. Baker, now of the Topeka Commonwealth, afterward became his partner in this paper. Seeing what had been done at Denison, a committee from Dallas, Tex., waited on Dr. C., and offered him $2,500 to start a paper in that town. He did so, founded the Dallas Daily Commercial, which soon became one of the leading dailies of the State. During Mr. Cutler's residence in Texas, he came to be recognized as one of the leading journalists of the State. He was the originator and one of the organizers of the "Texas Press Association," comprising all the leading journals in the State, and was president of the Association in 1873. In this hurried sketch much that might be said of one who, as one of that band of patriots, "took his life in his hands" daily, in the effort to reserve the future great State from the grasp of the slave power, has been necessarily omitted. Dr. Cutler was in every battle (perhaps with two or three exceptions), that was fought on Kansas soil. He was by the side of the gallant Shombre, when he was mortally wounded at the charge on Fort Titus, and had a ball through his hat, and a scalp wound at the same volley. He had a horse shot under him at Hickory Point. Was one of those who knelt at the grave of the noble Hoyt when his body was found, thrown in a hole like a dog, and took the oath of vengeance over his body. Was with Brown in his battles with Lane and Montgomery; in fact wherever there was work to do. After the adjournment of the Free-state Convention, at Lawrence, Dr. Cutler was taken sick with typhoid fever, and lay at Gov. Robinson's house for some time. When he became able to travel, he hired Mr. George Warren to take him home to Doniphan. On the way up they avoided the town of Atchison, but on his return, Warren undertook to go through that place. He was arrested and searched; he attempted to swallow one of the "League" books, but it was "choked up." The ruffians next stripped him and made him tell where he had been. He told them he had been to take Dr. Cutler home. A wagon load of men and a number of horsemen were sent after the doctor. They arrived at Doniphan about 9 o'clock at night, and found the sick man alone, and in bed. He was immediately "hustled" into the wagon and started for Atchison. Upon arrival there, a courier was at once dispatched to Weston, with the information that they had captured one of the leaders of the Abolitionists, and, fearing a rescue, asked for reinforcements. About 3 o'clock in the night, the crowd from Weston came in, drunk and noisy. They swore they would hang the Abolitionist at once. Sheriff Whitehead, with more heart than the others, went in to where the sick man lay, and gave him a loaded pistol, telling him that they were determined to kill him, and he must defend his life as best he could. The next morning he was tried for high treason before a "squire," and convicted. He was finally given his choice to "hang," or be taken to Lecompton, where the Pro-slavery party was gathering preparatory to "taking Lawrence." The sick man chose hanging, as he hardly expected to recover from his sickness. After much argument and contention, it was finally decided to take him to Lecompton, and he was again hustled in the wagon and started under guard to the Pro-slavery headquarters. At Lecompton he was placed in a tent. It rained hard, he was thoroughly drenched and had a relapse. One night, in a delirium, he attempted to escape, crawled about one hundred yards and then fainted. He was found the next morning and taken back. Shortly after this he was exchanged, and fell into the hands of good nurses at Lawrence, who brought him up as from the grave. In writing the history of one who took part in the daily events of a period so full of excitements and and dangers as that of the early history of Kansas, much must necessarily be left out. Dr. C. took part in nearly every important movement of the Free-state party in Kansas. He helped to recruit and organize the "Ragged Regiment," which Gen. Lane, Col. Dickey, Judge Morris Hunt and he piloted through Iowa, and entered Kansas with about the first of August, 1856. Soon after entering the State, a dispute arose as to the propriety of Gen. Lane's accompanying the "emigrants" farther. Lane, Walker, John Brown, Dr. Cutler and others left the party and made a forced march to Topeka, arrived there in time to hear of the Pro-slavery outrages on the Wakarusa, and started at once for the "seat of war," and consequently were in the various fights that followed in quick succession. Dr. Cutler married Miss Hattie A. Tuttle, at Topeka, in February, 1857, by whom he had four children, two of whom, Chas. K. and Mary A., are now living. His wife died at Centralia, Ill., during the spring of 1878. He afterward married Miss Fannie J. Dougherty, formerly of Evansville, by whom he has had three children, but one of whom is living-- Nannie. Dr. C. is now living at Geuda Springs, Sumner Co., Kan., where he has a drug store, practices his profession, and is Postmaster.

[TOC] [part 21] [part 19] [Cutler's History]