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Biographical Sketch of Richard W. Blue

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Richard W. Blue, a Union veteran of Virginia and a leading lawyer and judge of Kansas, finally advanced to the halis of Congress as a representative of his adopted state. He was born in Wood County, Virginia, September 8, 1841, and was raised on a mountain farm near the present city of Grafton. In 1859 he entered Monongalia Academy at Morgantown, Va., and remained at that institution several years, first as pupil and later as teacher, Subsequently he entered Washington College, Pennsylvania, and remained there until he enlisted in the Third West Virginia Infantry, at the opening of the Civil war. Mr. Blue was wounded in the Battle of Rocky Gap, in Southwestern Virginia, promoted to second lieutenant for gallantry in action, and within a short time was commissioned captain. In one of the engagements he was captured and held as a prisoner of war at Libby prison and also at Danville, Va. The regiment was mounted and after the Salem raid was changed, by order of the secretary of war, to the Sixth West Virginia Cavalry. Its final service was in a campaign on the plains against the Indians at the close of the war. The regiment was mustered out at Fort Leavenworth, so that Mr. Blue was in Kansas during the early ’60s. After his discharge from the army he returned to Virginia, taught school, read law and was admitted to the bar of that state in 1870. In 1871 he settled in Linn County, Kansas, but in 1898 he moved to Labette County, and finally located in Cherokee County. There he became a leading lawyer, serving for two terms as county attorney and twice as probate judge. Mr. Blue also served for two terms in the State Senate prior to 1894, when he was elected congressman-at-large from Kansas. He was renominated by acclamation in 1896, but swept aside by the wave of populism, and was actively engaged in the practice of law until his death at Bartles, Kansas, January 27, 1907.

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