KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS

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


WYANDOTTE COUNTY, Part 4

[TOC] [part 5] [part 3] [Cutler's History]

QUINDARO.

Why one town should live and another die; why one should flourish continually and another's glory fade in a day are problems which often vex the wisest. Back of Quindaro were such men as Ex-Gov. Robinson, Abehard Guthrie, Joel Walker and S. N. Simpson, at first, and it had as a foundation a rocky channel for a permanent harbor and the united efforts of a host of Free-State men. During the reign of terror of 1856, when Kansas City, Leavenworth, Delaware City and Atchison were closed to Free-State men, several fugitives had, at different times, by the assistance of Mr. Guthrie, who owned much of the land in the vicinity, embarked from this point and passed down the river in safety. Probably this fact induced Ex-Gov. Robinson and his friends to select the site of Quindaro. Several localities were examined, but the rocky channel of the river at Quindaro, and the warm support given the project by Mr. and Mrs. Guthrie, finally decided the matter. Principally through the negotiations of Mrs. Guthrie, a Wyandot lady of royal blood, whose father was chief of the Canadian Wyandots, land was purchased by the company from several members of the tribe, and in December, 1856, was surveyed by O. A. Bassett. The town was named Quindaro, in honor of Mrs. Guthrie, whose maiden name was Quindaro Brown. The town officers chosen were: Joel Walker, President; A. Guthrie, Vice President; C. Robinson, Treasurer; S. N. Simpson, Secretary. On January 1, 1857, ground was first broken on the town site, but little building was done until spring. Three or four buildings, however, were erected by April 1. among others the Quindaro House, the second largest hotel in the Territory-four stories, 60x80 feet. It was opened in February, 1857, being the first hotel in the county. In May, a considerable force of men was put to work grading the ground near the wharf and Kansas avenue, the main street running south from the river. The Chin-do-wan made its appearance on the 13th of that month, and in its first issue showed its happy faculty of advertising a new town in the way such business should be done to make an impression. Professional men already were swarming into Quindaro. Real estate and land agents were plenty. There were R. P. Gray, Charles Chadwick, H. J. Bliss, M.

B. Newman, R. M. Ainsworth, and Blood, Bassett & Brackett, Charles Robinson (agent for the Boston Land Trust). Dr. George E. Budington advertised as a physician; F. Johnson and George W. Veale as dealers in general merchandise; William J. MeCown and Ed. D. Buck, ditto; H. M. Simpson, O. H. Macauly, J. Grover and S. C. Smith, forwarding and commission merchants; Charles B. Ellis, civil engineer and surveyor; Ireland & M'Corkle, carpenters and joiners; Fred Klaus, who had a quarry a short distance from town, stone cutter and mason; A. C. Strock & Co., drugs and medicines, Dr. J. B. Welborn having an office in the same building; William Shepherd and D. D. Henry, hardware. The largest saw-mill in Kansas, subsequently erected, and started by A. J. Rowell in the fall, was talked of; a large ferry-boat, one of the largest on the Missouri River, and actually put in operation by Capt. Otis Webb in the summer, was building; Messrs. Robinson, Gray, Johnson, Webb and others were rushing around for subscriptions to build the Quindaro, Parkville & Burlington Railroad, to obtain connection with the Hannibal & St. Joe; the Methodist Church was built; Hon. Henry Wilson, who arrived May 24 on the steamer New Lucy, was furnished with rooms at the Quindaro House, and made a little speech to the citizens before he continued on to Lawrence; shares of the town company were going clear out of sight of the $100 from from which they started, and, all in all , the spectacle was presented of a town wild with hope, and riding, apparently, on to success. Everyone was everybody's friend. Gold circulated as freely as water, and in the spring and summer of 1857, few thought it necessary to take security of any kind. The significance of the meaning of the word Quindaro Chin-do-wan, as explained by Messrs. Walden & Babb, its proprietors, seemed about to be gloriously realized. Chin-do-wan is a Wyandot word, meaning leader, and Quindaro appeared to be taking the lead in everything. Quindaro is also a Wyandot word, and, freely translated, signified "In union there is strength" - and certainly all the citizens in Quindaro were pulling together. Quindaro was a temperance town, the lots having been deeded with the stipulation that they should not be occupied by liquor dealers. Some groggeries had crept in, however, by June, 1857, and the women petitioned and the men acted, and cleaned them out on the 17th of that month and year. By July, the ferry-boat, 100 feet long, with a 26-foot beam, was running between Quindaro and Parkville; the road to Lawrence was in prime condition, and Messrs. Robinson & Walker were operating a daily line of stages. The next grand triumph was the completion of the saw-mill in October, which cut 15,000 feet of lumber daily. Building continued; there was no end of public confidence in the grand future of Quindaro. She was a rival of Kansas City, Leavenworth, Atchison and Wyandotte. By June, 1858, she boasted 100 buildings on her town site, many of them of a substantial, metropolitan appearance. The Chin-do-wan kept up its trumpeting, and was taken possession of by V. J. Lane (who had been an energetic Quindaroan since the spring of 1857), G. W. Veale and Alfred Gray. They also published the Kansas Tribune in the fall and winter of 1858-59. The publication was continued for the benefit of the town company until 1861, when it was removed to Olathe. But the glory of Quindaro was already fading, and when the Second Cavalry, under Col. Davis, quartered themselves there at the commencement of the war, and handled the city so roughly, she gave up the ghost and is no more. The half a dozen buildings comprising the station of Quindaro are so desolate that they hardly could be honored with the name of settlement. In 1871-72, the old town site was vacated - first the western and then the eastern portion.

POLITICAL HISTORY.

The first election held in Wyandotte County was that of June, 1857, for a delegate to the Lecompton Constitution. The polls were protected by soldiers, and the votes were deposited in a "candle box," the candle box buried in a wood pile in Lecompton, afterward unearthed, and made infamous in history. In October, the county came into notice again, politically, by the stuffing of a ballot box and other frauds, perpetrated at the Delaware crossing, eight miles west of Wyandotte. It is said that many of the names found on the poll list could also be found, verbatim, in a New York City directory, which some enterprising Pro-slavery man happened to have in his possession at the time. Properly, however, the political history of Wyandotte County commences with its formation by the Legislature which convened In January, 1859. The act was passed and approved by Gov. Medary, on the 29th of that month, to create the county of Wyandotte. Its boundaries included that portion of Leavenworth and Johnson counties, within the following limits: "Commencing at a point in the middle of the channel of the Missouri River, where the north line of the Deleware Reserve intersects the same, running thence west on said reserve line to the line between ranges 22 and 23, south on said range line to the south boundary of Leavenworth County, thence easterly on said boundary to the main channel of the Missouri, thence north-westerly with said main channel to place of beginning."

The first meeting of the commissioners - George Russell and Georg e W. Veale (Mr. Veale acting in place of Alfred Gray) - was held at the Eldridge House, February 25, 1859. George Russell was appointed Chairman, and Myron J. Pratt, acting Secretary. Proceeding to canvass the votes cast at the election for officers held on February 22, certificates of election were ordered to be given to the following: Probate Judge, Jacques W. Johnson; Sheriff, Samuel E. Forsythe; Clerk of the Board of Super visors, Marshall A. Garrett; Register of Deeds, Vincent J. Lane; County Attorney, William L. McMath; Treasurer, Robert Robetaille; Surveyor Cyrus L. Gordon; Coroner, George R. Wood; Superintendent of Common schools, Jacob B. Welborn. At the next meeting Mr. Gray was present, and it was resolved to lease the room on the corner of Nebraska Avenue and Third street from S. D. McDonald for the county officers. The County Attorney was then established in a room over the post office. At the meeting held June 15, the salary of the Clerk was fixed at $400, of the Probate Judge at $800, and County Attorney $600. f course the salaries of the county officials have changed since then. he commissioners declared Barzillar Gray elected to the office of Probate Judge (J. W. Johnson having died,) at their meeting held September 2, 1859.

September 20, Messrs. Russell and Gray resolved that the "County Attorney is hereby instructed to strictly enforce the requirements of the act to restrain dram shops and taverns, and regulating the sale of intoxicating liquors, approved February 11, 1859; and he is hereby directed to indict at the next term of the District Court those persons who fail to take out license, and in other respects neglect to comply with the provisions of said law." In October, the taxes levied on the Quindaro Town Company, were remitted upon the petition of Charles Robinson, that said company" did not own any personal property subject to taxation during the year 1858." In April, 1860, William McKay was elected Chairman of the new Board, which consisted of himself, J. E. Bennett and S. E. Forsythe. After talking "jail" for a number of months, in July, 1860, the plan for a jail was adopted, the building to be twenty feet square, two stories, the first story to be divided into five cells, and the upper story into three rooms, approached by an outside stairway, the whole structure to be built of planks laid and spiked together. J. L. Hall was awarded the contract for $2,000. In the meantime claims were being allowed Luther H. Wood for subsisting and guarding prisoners.

RAILROADS, ETC.

As soon as the white settlers commenced to come into the county in any great numbers, they began to hay out roads, establish ferries, build bridges and finally, railroads. Among the earliest and least of these roads, was the one from Quindaro to Lawrence, in good order in 1857. During that year a ferry was also established at Quindaro, and one in Wyandotte, by Silas Armstrong, during the next year. The first bridge in the county, was built in 1858, by private subscription. It cost $15,000, and was located three miles above Wyandotte. In 1860, a tornado took out one span, and the balance of the structure soon disappeared. When Quindaro was at the height of its growth, in the summer of 1857, "the Quindaro, Parkville & Burlington railroad," to connet Quindaro with the Hannibal & St. Joe road, was a subject much broached, but the first actual survey of a road in the county, was made from Quindaro to Lawrence, under the charter of the Missouri River & Rocky Mountain railroad. The first actual grading for a road was done at Wyandotte, on the Kansas Valley line, in 1859. James R. Parr, then Mayor of the city, was a prime mover in the enterprise. The grade was about twenty feet higher than the present road-bed of the Kansas Pacific. Before this road was put in operation, in 1863, a number of territorial thoroughfares had been established, under the act approved in February, 1859. In June, one was located from Wyandotte via Quindaro, Leavenworth and Atchison to Elwood, Doniphan County; the Santa Fe road in this county, October, 1859; the road from Quindaro to Salina via Lawrence and Topeka (fifteen miles in Wyandotte County), in August, 1859, etc., etc. During the next summer the Shawnee & Kansas City, or State Line road, was also repaired, straightened and regulated. Besides this activity manifested in obtaining good means of communication with their neighbors, the people of Wyandotte County put their hands in their pockets, as private individuals, and helped along the good work. In 1863, the Kansas Pacific Road was put in operation through the county, along the north bank of the Kaw, and the Missouri Pacific, in 1866, through the eastern and northeastern portions of the county. At the time the Kansas Pacific road was being pushed up the valley of the Kaw, its value was uncertain as Missouri was then in the embraces of the war, and its strong rebel element prevented much sympathy being felt for the railroad enterprises of Kansas. The line seemed to have no grip, either East or West. Samuel Hallett, the contractor, was assassinated in the streets of Wyandotte, during August, 1864, and the work passed into the hands of St. Louis capitalists shortly before the war. The Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe, and the Kansas City, Fort Scott & Gulf railroads, give the districts of the county lying south of the Kaw, the necessary means of communication. The stations on the, Missouri Pacific in this county, are Connor's, Pomeroy, Nearman, Quindaro and Wyandotte; on the Kansas Pacific division of the Union Pacific, Muncie, Edwardsville, Tiblow and Loring; on the A., T. & S. F., Argentine, Turner, and Kaw Valley; on the Fort Scott road, Rosedale.

In 1867, the fine wooden bridge across the Kaw two miles above Armstrong was constructed. An iron bridge connecting Kansas City and Wyandotte, was constructed, at a cost of $62,000. The street railway connecting the two places was built in 1873.

The first term of court was held in Constitution Hall, June 6, 1859, Joseph Williams, Associate Justice, presiding; James A. Cruise, Clerk; W. L. McMath, Prosecuting Attorney; S. E. Forsythe, Sheriff. The court was held on the second floor - the eastern portion being partitioned off for the Probate Court, and the western for the District. The Legislature of 1859-60 remodeled the Judicial Districts, Wyandotte County being transferred from the Fort Scott to the Leavenworth District. John Petit, Chief Justice, held the May term of court in Wyandotte.

After leaving Constitution Hall, the county officers moved into Byron Judd's building on Minnesota avenue. They changed around several times. At present (September, 1882) a fine two-story brick Court House, to cost $35,000, is being erected on the northwest corner of Minnesota avenue and Seventh street. The site was purchased from H. M. Northrup for $6,000. The county poor farm is situated about twelve miles west of Wyandotte City.

Among some of the best known residents of the county who have held public positions, may be mentioned, B. Gray, Probate Judge in 1860; Byron Judd, County Treasurer in 1863, and Senator in 1872, 1874 and 1876; V. J. Lane, Register of Deeds in 1859 and 1860, Representative to the Legislature in 1867 and 1869; Isaac Walker, Representative in 1865; Thomas J. Barker, Representative in 1886; Isaac B. Sharp, Senator in 1866, and Probate Judge in 1868 and 1870; John T. McKay, Representative in 1869; W. T. Roberts, Representative in 1860; R. E. Cable, present Mayor of the city, Representative in 1870; W. B. Bowman, Probate Judge in 1863 and 1866; M. B. Newman, County Attorney in 1864, and Clerk in 1865; Silas Armstrong, Sheriff in 1867; James A. Cruise, Clerk of the District Court or Register of Deeds for nearly the whole period between 1861 and 1872; R. B. Taylor, Representative in 1873; W. W. Dickinson, Superintendent of Public instruction in 1872, and Fred. Speck in 1862; George R. Wood, Commissioner in 1869; Robert Robetaille, Treasurer in 1959 and 1860; W. J. Buchan, Representative in 1872 and 1874, and Senator in 1877; N. McAlpine, Treasurer in 1873 and 1876; D. R. Churchill, Probate Judge in 1873 and 1874; H. W. Cook, Representative in 1875 and 1876; W. H. Ryus, Sheriff in 1875, 1876, 1877 and 1878; J. S. Clark, Register of Deeds in 1877, 1878, 1879, 1880 and 1881.

The county officers elected for 1882 were as follows: Probate Judge, Rufus E. Cable; Sheriff, Thomas R. Bowling; Treasurer, William Albright; Register of Deeds, William H. Bridgens; County Clerk, David R. Emmons; Surveyor, Walter Hale; Superintendent of Public Instruction; Daniel R. Hiatt; Superintendent of County Asylum, John Kern; Coroner, Dr. Thomas C. Baird; Attorney, James S. Gibson; Comnuissioners, James P. Johnson, Hiram Malott and J. William Wahlenmaler.

STATISTICS.

From tbe latest figures of the Town Assessors, prepared in August, 1882, it is found that the value of all taxable lands in Wyandotte County is $1,861,336; those of Wyandotte City being placed at $115,935, and of Kansas City, Kan., at $402,180; Shawnee Township, $376 783, Wyandotte Township, $414,164; Quindaro Township, $207,595; Prairie Township, $169,994; Delaware Township, $174,685. Of the 91,053 acres of land, 53,074 acres are under cultivation and 37,979 acres are not. In Wyandotte City the value of town lots is $894,189, in Kansas City, Kan., $195,692; Shawnee Township, $138,945; other townships, $65 855. The personal property throughout the county is valued at $372,473, of which sum $123,578 is accredited to Wyandotte City, $110,148 to Kansas City, Kan., and the balance to the remaining townships. The railroad property is valued at $555,356.69. Total value of all kinds of property, $4,083,855.69, divided as follows: Wyandotte City, $l,143,906.86; Kansas City, Kan., $720,210.06; Shawnee Township, $718,921.14; Wyandotte Township, $659,576.23; Quindaro Township, $337,500.13; Prairie Township, $225,722.47; Delaware Township, $278,018.75. During the season of 1882, 2,584 acres of wheat were harvested in Wyandotte Township, 1,771 in Shawnee. 1,725 in Quindaro, 1,399 in Prairie and 2 153 In Delaware. Corn was planted: In Wyandotte Township 3,281 acres; Shawnee Township 3,965 acres; Quindaro Township, 1,876 acres; Prairie Township, 3,953 acres; Delaware Township, 3,681 acres. In the county, 4,341 acres of oats were harvested, 3,080 acres of Irish potatoes planted in 1882, garden products marketed in 1881 to the value of $58,811, and 86,334 pounds of butter manufactured. There are 2095 horses in the county, 1,840 milch cows, and 7,398 swine. The value of animals slaughtered was $128,951.

According to the latest returns made in 1382, the population of Wyandotte County is 23,336, distributed as follows: Wyandotte City, 8,677; Kansas City, Kan., 4,300; Shawnee Township, 2,683; Wyandotte Township, 3,627; Quindaro Township, 1,586; Prairie Township, 1,198; Delaware Township, 1,165. In 1860, the population of the county was 2,609; 1870, 10,015; 1830, 21,342; 1882, 23,336.

The county is divided Into forty school districts, seventy-five teachers being employed. Of the 24,000 population which the county contains, 8,000 are of school age. It costs about $30,000 to maintain the district school system of Wyandotte County, the value of school property being $130,000.

WYANDOTTE CITY.

The history of the earliest Settlement of the town of Wyandotte is identical with that of the early Indian residents of the county, the Wyandot tribe, elsewhere given in full; The present city is located on the site of the Indian village. In the sketch of the Wyandot Indians, the reader has already found mention of the first beginnings of what is now the handsome and prosperous city of Wyandotte.

EARLY HISTORY.

The majority of the Wyandot nation having become citizens, the time was ripe for a union with any white settlers who might make their appearance. They could now transact any business on equal terms, and their opportunity soon arrived. Dr. J. P. Root, still an honored citizen of Wyandotte, and formerly United States Minister to Chili, states that in December, 1856, he and Thomas B. Eldridge came from Lawrence to Wyandotte, on the north side of the Kansas River, for the purpose of selecting a good town site for a company of Eastern friends and capitalists, who were anxious to invest their money to advantage. All but these two remained in Kansas City. Messrs. Root and Eldridge were entertained over night at the house of Silas Armstrong, and in the morning looked over the ground. They found that Isaiah Walker was busy running a variety store and post office, on the north side of Nebraska avenue, between Third and Fourth streets--the same building afterward used as a court house, and now (with piazzas added) occupied as a private dwelling house. Thomas Barker was then salesman ; Maj. Overton was a partner of Silas Armstrong. The bottom between Wyandotte and Kansas City was then nearly covered with a heavy growth of timber, except a few small dwellings near the State line and near the mouth of the river. There was also a small opening amid the heavy growth of thickets made, years ago, when the Government thought of locating the Fort at Wyandotte, instead of Leavenworth. The mouth of the Kaw was nearly one-quarter of a mile further east than it is now, owing to the washing away of the Missouri River. Well, the ground was looked over, and the scouts returned to their friends on the Missouri side the next night and made arrangements to form a town company, the members of which were J. P. Root, T. B. Eldridge, S. W. Eldridge, W.Y.Roberts, Thomas H. Swope, Robert Morrow, Daniel Killen, Gaius Jenkins, John McAlpine and James M. Winchell. Messrs. Roberts, McAlpine, Swope and Jenkins were appointed a committee to go to Wyandotte and see what could be done toward inducing certain former members of the nation to join the company. The members of the town organization on the Missouri side waited some days for the committee to report; became uneasy, and came to investigate; discovered that their agents had formed a company with Isaiah Walker, Joel Walker and Silas Armstrong, among the most influential members of the former Wyandot nation, who were owners of the site. There was naturally some high talk between the two town companies, but a compromise was effected, according to Dr. Root, by which there was to be an equal division of profits. To avoid a long explanation, however, it is generally stated that the town company consisted of these four white men and the three

Wyandot Indians. In March, 1857, the town site was surveyed by John H. Miller, of Girard, Penn., who, upon his maps makes the following statement: "The present city company is formed of seven original stockholders, three of whom are Wyandots. They purchased the lands forming the town site from the Wyandot owners, who are to receive patents for these lands as soon as they can be issued. The Government Commissioners completed the assignment to these Wyandots on the town site, only in February, 1857, "Upon the organization of the town company, Silas Armstrong became President; W. Y. Roberts, Secretary; Isaiah Walker, Treasurer, and Jolin McAlpine, Trustee, to receive conveyances of the lands bought, and on sale of lots, to convey to purchasers. There were about 400 shares, ten lots to the share. Sales began in March, 1857, when the survey had been completed, and brought $500 a share. There were laid out four avenues, each 100 feet wide, running from the Missouri River two miles west through the heart of the city. These were to be the great thoroughfares of commerce. Of public grounds, there were the levee, extending from the northern boundary of the "Ferry Tract" to the northern boundary of the town, and from the front lots to the river. "Oakland Park" was bounded by Washington avenue on the north, Eleventh street on the west, Kansas avenue on the south and Tenth street on the east--650x628 feet. The rush of immigration to the new town was immense, and almost instantaneous. Houses could not be built fast enough to shelter the comers; carpenters readily obtained $5 a day in gold; lumber was in hot demand; saw-mills went up as if by magic. Collins & Rogers built at the foot of the bluffs, north of Judge Walker's; Armstrong & Overton had a mill in Wyandotte City. Strangers from all parts of the country, and some from Europe, were here to invest their money, many of them purely for speculative purposes. Goods were piled up on the levee and people lived in tents until they could get houses erected. Shares of the company sold so rapidly at $500 that they were advanced to $750, when about 200 of them had already been sold. The avenues were graded as far west from the levee as Fourth street; Second, Third and Fourth streets were also graded. After selling a short time at $750, the shares were advanced to $1,000 apiece. The prospect now was that the entire town site would be bought out of the company's hands, and the balance of the shares were accordingly withdrawn from the market. Delay in making conveyances to the swarm of settlers, who almost threatened the very existence of the town company caused much hard feeling and positive threats of violence against the members. But the matter was finally re-adjusted. Roads were now being laid out from Wyandotte in all directions; but the year 1857 may be considered her season of greatest business activity. The bulk of her trade was then transacted on Nebraska and Washington avenues, east of Fourth street. Besides the quite extensive array of business houses, two newspapers were being published, to advertise the town--the Telegraph, by M. W. Delahay, and the Democrat by Mr. Abbott. The physicians were represented by J. C. Bennett, F. Speck, J. Speck and J. P. Root; the attorneys by Bartlett & Glick, Davis & Post, J. W. Johnson, B. Gray and D. B Hadley. At this time the population of Wyandotte was about 400, and the inhabitants were wild with enthusiasm, and almost splitting with (not suppressed) laughter at the attempt of Gov. Robinson and his Free State friends to found the town of Quindaro, four miles above. But a short time thereafter their despised rival gave them good reason to fear that their laughter would have to be turned to tears.

On June 8, 1858, B. Gray, A. B. Bartlett, Daniel Killen et al, petitioned G. W. Gardner, then Probate Judge of Leavenworth County, of which Wyandotte was then a portion, for a town government. The request was granted, William McKay, George Russell, Daniel Gillen, Charles W. Glick and William F. Simpson being appointed trustees. It was incorporated under the name and style of "The Inhabitants of the Town of Wyandotte." The trustees held their first meeting, June 12, 1858, all being present, being sworn into office by William L.McMath, Justice of the Peace. William McKay was chosen chairman; Joseph W. H. Watson, Clerk; Charles W. Patterson, Assessor; Walter N. Canfield, Collector; Samuel E. Forsythe, Constable.

The town was created a city January 29, 1859, and the first election held in February, 1859. The population was then 1,259. When Wyandotte became a city, the town was $1,500 in debt, which was assumed by the municipal organization.

The first officers of the city of Wyandotte were James R. Parr, Mayor; Aldermen, W. P. Overton, J. N. White, B. Judd, D. Killen, Isaiah Walker and H. McDowell; Clerk, E. T. Yedder; Assessor, David Kirkbride; Treasurer, J. H. Harris; Attorney, W. L. McMath; Marshal; N. A. Kirk; Engineer; W. Miller; Street Commissioner; H. Burgard. George Russell was Mayor of the city the next two terms, then followed in succession S. A. Cobb (1862), J. M. Funk (1863-64), I. B. Sharp (1865-66), J. McGrew (1867), S. A. Cobb (1868), Byron Judd (1869), J. S. Stockton (1870-71-72), James McGrew (1873), G. B. Wood (1874), C. Hains (1875-76), Fred. Speck (1877-78), J. S. Stockton (1879-80), R. E. Cable (1881-82). The present city officers are: Mayor, R. E. Cable; Clerk, Edward H. Sager; Police Judge, F. B. Anderson; City Attorney, H. McGrew; City Treasurer, Chris. Bernhard; City Engineer, Walter Hale; City Marshal, H. T. Harris. There is also a Board of Education, established in 1877. The city is divided into six wards--two councilmen from each ward.

The indebtedness of the city is $152,679.32. For the quarter ending June 15, the salaries of officers amounted to $1,600.40; work on streets, $1,432.86, and total expenses for maintaining the municipal government, $6,140.49.

The first post office was opened by Thomas J. Barker, in the spring of 1857. He held forth in the old court house building, on Nebraska avenue, where be and Isaiah Walker were keeping store. The Postmaster brought the mail from Kansas City on horseback, William Chick, of the banking firm Northrup (H. M.) & Chick, maintaining the service in that city for the first year, out of his own pocket. The Wyandots were great readers. as a rule, and it was as much to accommodate them, as for any other reason, that the post office in Kansas City was established. In 1863, Barker was succeeded as Postmaster by R. B. Taylor, who held the office three years. E. T. Vedder, who followed him in 1866, remained but a short time, being succeeded by A. D. Downs, who remained until 1881, when George B. Reichenecker, the present incumbent, was appointed.

In closing this chapter of the early history of Wyandotte, it is interesting to trace the seven members of the town company, generally spoken of as the original members. Isaiah Walker lives in Seneca, Indian Territory; Thomas H. Swope in Kansas City; Joel Walker died at Leavenworth, in the summer of 1857; Gaius Jenkins was shot by Gen. Lane, at Lawrence, in the summer of 1858; Silas Armstrong died in December, 1865, at Wyandotte; John McAlpine was killed by the cars in Pittsburgh, and W. Y. Roberts died in Lawrence, a few years ago.

[TOC] [part 5] [part 3] [Cutler's History]