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


[TOC] [part 23] [part 21] [Cutler's History]


JOHN CUMMINS, otherwise John O'Brien, firmer, Section 30, P. O. Lansing came to Kansas, spring of 1861, and was the first settler in Fairmount Township, where he lived till 1878, when he came to present location in Wyandotte County. He belonged to Kansas State Militia during the war, and was called out during Price's raid. Was in the engagement at Westport. He was born in Ireland, June 22 1818; son of Daniel and Mary Cummins. In 1833, he went to England and remained there till 1855, and then sailed for the United States, and settled in LaSalle, Ill.; from there he moved to Alton, and during the winter of 1855, engaged in railroading; the next spring, moved to Keokuk, Iowa; lived there till 1861, when he came to Kansas. He was married in London, England, July, 1851, to Catherine Sullivan, who is a native of Cork, Ireland. They have ten children - Michael and Dennis, born in London, John, born in Iowa, Ellen, born in Kansas City, Mo., Katie, born in Leavenworth County, Kan.; Mary, born in Kansas City, Maggie, Daniel, Julia and Steven born in Leavenworth County. Mr. Cummins and wife are consistent members of the Catholic Church.

MRS. ADELL FISHER, Section 18, P. O. Conner, came to Kansas City,. 1859, where her husband Abel Fisher, engaged in the manufacture of sash and blinds until the breaking-out of the rebellion, when he enlisted in the Federal Army, was taken prisoner at Lexington, Mo., afterward paroled and immediately went into hospital service, and there remained until the close of the war. In 1872, the family moved to Wyandotte County, where they have remained engaged in farming ever since. Mrs. Fisher was born in Hinckley, Medina Co., Ohio; her maiden name was Bullard; she was the daughter of Curtis and Sarah Bullard. She was married at Sheridan, Putnam County Ohio, February, 1858, to Abel Fisher, son of Abel and Ruth Fisher. He was a native of Newburgh, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, and departed this life, July 17, 1877. Mrs. Fisher has a comfortable home beautifully situated on a commanding eminence overlooking the Missouri River and an extensive landscape of diversified beauty. On leaving her native place, she came direct to Kansas City. She has seven children - Charley Fisher born November 13, 1858, died September 15, 1859; Anna J., born June 17, 1866, died October 8, 1886; Susan M., born December 17, 1861; Curtis Abel, born April 11, 1869; Alexis, born December 27, 1871; Augustus James, born February 21, 1874, and Sarah Mabel, born March 9, 1877. The last five are all living.

JEPTHA H. HOLLINSWORTH, farmer, Section 18, Township 10, Range 23 east P. O. Conner, came to Kansas, November 10, 1868 and settled on Delaware lands, where he has resided ever since. The farm which he now cultivates was purchased of James Conner, chief of the Delaware tribe. It was the chief's home, and the buildings which he occupied are still standing. Mr. Hollingsworth has engaged in farming ever since he came to Kansas. He has been engaged in every public-spirited enterprise that sought the development of his neighborhood and county from the organization of his school district down to the present time. He organized the district and was appointed its first clerk. He also helped to organize Prairie Township, and was elected its first clerk. He has been a member of the school board for nine years; was at one time unanimously nominated by two conventions for County Attorney; was also a Democrat to the Congressional convention which convened in Wyandotte, in 1878. He helped to organize Col. Cummins' battalion of Confederate soldiers in Bates County, Mo., in 1861. He served in different capacities during the entire war, first, as Major, then as Commissary, and afterward as Quartermaster. He was in the engagements at Pea Ridge and Drywood, and in many skirmishes of minor importance. He was born in Todd County, Ky., March 17, 1829. He is the son of Jeptha and Mary B. Hollingsworth. He left his native home May 14, 1852, and came West to Liberty, Clay Co., Mo., engaged in the practice of law at Liberty until 1857, then moved to Bates County, Mo., and practiced law at Butler about four years; then entered the army, his family moving to Texas, and remained there until the close of the war. At the close of the war he came back with his family to Bates County. Mo., accepting fully the result of the conflict, and fully resolved to do all in his power to heal the breach and to promote the peace and prosperity of the country, but his life was threatened by a band of outlaws who ordered him to leave the country under penalty of death. He moved over to Clay County one year, and then to Platte, where he lived two years, and then came to Kansas, where he has remained ever since. He received a collegiate education at Elkton, Ky., and was there a class mate of Benjamin H. Bristow, Secretary of the Treasury, of Grant's Cabinet. He was married in Elkton, Ky., June 16, 1853, to Sarah F. Jessup, niece and adopted daughter of Col. Thomas S. Jessup, who, for twenty years was Quartermaster General of the United States Army. She was a native of Kentucky. They have seven children - Thomas J., Mollie C., Elizabeth V., Ruth, B., Virgil H., Ella B. and Fannie Eugenia. He is a consistent member of the Baptist Church, while his wife is a worthy member of the Cumberland Presbyterian. Mr. Hollingsworth organized the first Sunday school ever organized in this school district; has continuously for the last five years been Superintendent of Conner Sunday school; was voted a member of the Kansas Historical Society in 1872.

OLA JOHNSON, farmer, Section 13, P. O. Connor, came to Kansas in the spring of 1870; lived four years and six months at Kansas City. Kan., during the corporation of that place, then moved to his present location, and has engaged here in farming ever since. He was born near Malmo, Sweden, February 3, 1843; is a ion of John Nelson and Boel Nelson; he lived with his parents until he left Sweden, in 1869; he served an apprenticeship at the cooper's trade, but afterward followed house carpentering. He left Sweden in the spring of 1869, and the same year settled in Illinois, but the following spring removed to Kansas. He was married in Kansas City, Mo., November 7, 1870 to Cecilia Nilson, daughter of Nils Swanson and Hannah Pearson. She is a native of Sweden. They have three children, viz.; Bettie, Hadda and Ellen. Mr. Johnson and wife are worthy members of the Lutheran Church.

ALEXANDER KELLY, farmer, Section 15, P. O. Conner, came to Kansas in the fall of 1856, settled in Delaware, Leavenworth County, and came to his present place fourteen years ago and engaged in farming ever since. He belonged to the Kansas State militia during the Price raid; was in the engagement at Westport. He was born in Boone County, Mo., August 1, 1829; is the son of- Benjamin and Debiby Kelly. He left his native place in 1841, and moved to Linn County, Mo.; remained there nearly four years, and in 1844, moved to Platte County. In 1816, he went with Gen. Harney's command as a teamster. Left Ft. Leavenworth with twenty-seven wagons, accompanied by Gen. Harney's army, and went through what is now the State of Kansas, then a wilderness of prairie, and occupied by the Indians, to old Bent's Fort, in New Mexico. The round trip occupied three months and five days. On his return, he resumed farming in Platte County, and in 1856, came to Kansas. He was married in Platte County, in May, 1845, to Agnes Finley. He has five children - Ellen, Francis, Emeranda, Mary and William.

B. R. McCLOUD, farmer, Section 29, P. O. Maywood, came to Kansas, spring of 1878; settled where he now resides, and has been engaged in farming ever since. He was born in Cattaraugus County, N. Y., January 1, 1840, the son of Abram and Eveline McCloud At an early age his parents moved to Union County, Ohio, and after a short stay in Ohio, moved to Illinois and lived in that State about eighteen years. On the first day of April, 1860, started from Genesee, Ill. with emigrant train for California. The trip was made in about seven months, via Des Moines, Omaha and Salt Lake to San Francisco, and was attended with considerable danger from hostile Indians. Lost some cattle and two horses. Two men were killed by Indians. After reaching California, Mr. McCloud engaged in freighting and mining; spent about eighteen months in Placer Diggings, Forest City, Cal., and in Ophir mines, Virginia City; he then went to Idaho, and from there to Oregon, spending about two years in each place. His mining operations netted him about $10,000. He then returned to Illinois and farmed five years, and in 1878, came to Kansas. He was married in Henry County, Ill., 1867, to Jemima Riley, daughter of James and Sarah Ann Riley, by whom he had three children - Elmer, Arthur and Minnie. His wife died March 19, 1873, and he was married a second time August, 1877, to Isaline Miles, daughter of John and Cynthnia Miles. She is a native of Illinois. This last union has been blessed with one child - May.

WILLIAM LYON McKENZIE, farmer, Section 34, P. O. Maywood. He was born in Canada West, August 31, 1824. He is the son of William and Jane McKenzie. He left his native place in September, 1840, and went to Fowlerville, Livingston Co., N. Y.; engaged there in cabinet-making four years, then returned to Canada and remained there about four years and moved to Waukesha, Wis.; seven months afterward, he moved to Montello, Marquette Co., Wis., where he resided until he came to Kansas, in the fall of 1865. He enlisted at Kingston, Marquette County, October 18, 1861, in Company C, Third Wisconsin Volunteer Cavalry, served three years and four months, and was mustered out February 17, 1865. In March, 1862, was ordered to St. Louis, thence to Leavenworth, Kan., and a few weeks later the second battalion under command of S. B. Henning, was ordered to Ft. Scott. From this time on, he did border service, hunting and fighting bushwhackers, scouting, escorting trains, etc. He was in the engagement at Baxter Springs, where the notorious guerrilla, Quantrill, with a force of about 200 men, surprised the camp and but for the coolness of one man would have slaughtered the entire Federal force. Fifty Union soldiers under command of Captain Pond were sent from Fort Scott to Baxter Springs, where about 100 colored troops under command of Capt. Cook were already stationed. On the morning after their arrival at Baxter, about twenty-five of the best mounted men in camp were sent out into Missouri on a foraging expedition. They crossed Spring River about one-fourth of a mile from camp, and taking one road, Quantrill came in on the other and crossed the river at the same point. The camp was off guard and the men were either in their tents or eating dinner. Mr. McKenzie happened to be the only man out and unengaged at the time the attack was made. The first note of warning was a volley of fire and a yell from the woods adjoining. Mr. McKenzie cried "To arms!" and while the camp was in confusion, he voluntarily took command of the south side of the camp while Capt. Pond directed the north side. In a few moments, thc bushwhackers charged right through the camp, then back again and joined the main force who were skulking along the edge of the woods. Seven Federals were killed and four guerrillas bit the dust, two of whom were shot by Mr. McKenzie himself. But for his cool, self-possession, promptness and bravery in sounding the alarm and in organizing and directing the movements of the little command, the entire force would have been surprised and slaughtered. Quantrill's entire command took the Ft. Scott road, and just over the ridge and out of sight of Baxter Springs, three-fourths of a mile from Pond's camp, they met and surprised Gen. Blunt's body-guard, consisting of 125 men, killed 66 of Blunt's men, burned the band-wagon, massacred the band, only one of whom escaped, covered the drummer boy with music books and other combustibles, and literally burned him to a crisp. Quantrill's men then scattered and escaped south. The survivors of the massacre, including Gen. Blunt, scattered and came in small squads in Pond's camp. Thus ended one of the most touching and sad events which has ever transpired on Kansas soil. Mr. McKenzie enlisted as a private and was elected first Sergeant, and refusing further promotion served in that capacity until the close of the war. He came to Kansas in the fall of 1865, worked at his trade n Leavenworth City for a few months, and in the spring of 1886, went to farming as a renter. He farmed for two years in Wyandotte County before purchasing, then bought the home which he now occupies. He has 320 acres of fine farming and pasture land, and has one of the most beautiful country homes in Kansas. He was married in Paris, Canada West, by Rev. A. Cleghorn, April 25, 1850, to Elizabeth Dixon, daughter of James and Martha Dixon. His wife is a native of Canada and of Scotch descent. They have five living children - William, Henry, Frank, Charles J., Robert and Mary Maranda. Mr. McKenzie and wife are members of the Baptist Church.

ALONZO F. MORROW, farmer, Section 9, P. O. Lansing, came to Kansas September, 1866. Settled in Leavenworth City, and engaged in gardening and fruit growing until spring of 1881 when be moved to his present location, where he is engaged in farming. He was born in Brady's Bend, Armstrong Co., Penn., March 1, 1857, son of John and Elizabeth Morrow, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. In the spring of 1865, moved to Queenstown and remained one year, then came to Kansas. Mr. Morrow is unmarried. Has eighty acres of choice land, well improved, and is an industrious and enterprising young man, and will doubtless be prominently identified with the future history and development of Kansas.

HERMAN SCHLAGEL, farmer, Section 14, P. O. Connor, came to Kansas March 4, 1868, and settled in Leavenworth City, and for the first year and a half was engaged in furnishing ties for the construction of Missouri Pacific Railroad, after which he came to Wyandotte County, and settled where he now lives. He also owns a farm in Leavenworth City, and is extensively engaged in farming and stock-raising. He is a German by birth, but is thoroughly American in his tastes and in his habits of thought and action. While a stirring, active business man, be devotes some time to reading, and takes a lively interest in educational matters. Has been a member of School Board ever since he settled in Wyandotte County. He was born in Germany, February 2, 1837, son of John and Mary Schlagel. His father died in Germany, and at the age of six years he came with his mother to America, and settled in St. Louis, Mo. Remained there about ten years, and in 1853 moved to Illinois, where he remained till spring of 1868 and then came to Kansas. He was married in St. Louis, November 16 1864, to Isabell Snyder, by whom he had two children - Jessie Isabel and Charles Edgar Schlagel. His first wife died February 28, 1879, aged thirty-three years, two months and ten days. He was married a second time in Kansas March 31, 1881, to Mary Donahoe, a widow lady whose maiden name was Kincade. She is a native of Ohio. Mr. Schlagel is a member of the Lutheran Church.

THOMAS P. WILLIAMS, farmer, Section 27, P. O. Maywood, settled in Wyandotte County in 1865, and has engaged in farming in same county ever since. He was born in East Tennessee February 4, 1834, son of Jose p h and Nancy A. Williams. His parents moved to Tama County, Mo., in 1836, and remained there till 1857, and in June 13, 1855, the subject of this sketch enlisted in the United States Regular Army. Was sent to Fort Leavenworth in August, same year, and first set foot on Kansas soil as a soldier August 1855. Was soon after sent with a company of twenty-five men under command of Lieut. McIntosh, in pursuit of a band of hostile Comanche Indians, who had been trying to rob a stagecoach and had committed other depredations on the frontier settlements, and after three days' ride from Fort Leavenworth came up with them, surprised them in camp, killed fourteen out of a force of 300, took 114 ponies, and captured all their arms, consisting principally of bows and arrows. Found only two guns among them. Only one white man wounded, and that only a slight finger wound. The command then returned to Fort Leavenworth, where Mr. Williams was honorably discharged on account of disability, having served about six months. He moved to Arkansas in 1857, and remained there till 1861, when he enlisted in the Confederate Army, Company H, First Arkansas Cavalry. He served during the entire war, and was in many of the heaviest engagements. At the close of the war, he came to Kansas, and has lived here ever since. He was married in Tama County, Mo., March 4, 1855, to Mary Ann Roberts, a native of Brown County, Ind. They have seven children, viz.: Calvin V., Minerva J., George T. N., Tilghmon H., Joseph M., William Jasper and Vinila. They are both members of Missionary Baptist Church.


There are several neat little stations and hamlets scattered throughout the county, the largest being Edwardsville, located about fourteen miles west of Wyandotte, on the Union Pacific Railroad. It was named for Hon. John H. Edwards, then General Passenger and Ticket Agent of the road, since then a State Senator from Ellis County, Kan. The land where this rural village now stands was once the farm of Half-Moon, a Chief of some degree among the Delawares. He sold the land to Gen. T. Smith, of Leavenworth, and others, who in turn sold it to William Kouns. A post office was established here in 1867. The Methodist Episcopal Church effected an organization here in 1868, and had quite a large membership. In 1868, through the personal influence and direct labors of William Kouns, the County Commissioners, created the town of Delaware, in which Edwardsville is located. It was platted in 1869, the proprietor being Mr. William Kouns. Some time in 1870, the Christian Church was organized here, and now numbers sixty members. There is only one church organization in the town now, the Methodist Episcopal Church having disbanded because of the removal to the adjacent cities of so many of its members. Composit Lodge, No. 152, A., F. & A. M., was organized here in 1872, but in 1877 surrendered its charter. The station now consists of thirty or forty dwellings, a number of business houses, a good depot and fine school.

[TOC] [part 23] [part 21] [Cutler's History]