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Biography of Edward Buckman

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Edward Buckman. A few years ago Edward Buckman retired from his farm in Shawnee County, where he had spent the most profitable years of his life, and is now living retired at his home 1516 Guthrie Street in Topeka. The Buckman family has played a very worthy part in developing the lands of Kansas since pioneer times, and Mr. Edward Buckman has also found opportunity at different times to exercise his influence for good in local affairs.

He was born on a farm in Columbiana County, Ohio, June 26, 1853, one of the four children born to Thomas and Susan (Howell) Buckman, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. Of these four children the two now living are Edward and his sister Mercy, Mrs. W. H. Coultis of Topeka.

In 1869 Thomas Buckman and his family and also his brother A. Harding Buckman brought their families out to Kansas, locating on adjoining farms in Shawnee County. Thomas Buckman and family for three years lived on seventeen acres on West Sixth Street in Topeka, and in 1872 moved out to the land which in the meantime he had broken up with teams of oxen and horses, and thereafter he gave all his time and energy to the improvement and cultivation of this place. The life and character of the late Thomas Buckman were such that they deserve more than passing mention in any history of Kansas: Politically he was a whig and afterwards an equally active republican. Back in Ohio he held some offices in the city of Alliance, and after coming to Shawnee County he was sent to represent the county in the State Legislature in-1876-77, served as county commissioner during 1886-90, and always gave liberally of his time and means for the support of enterprises that would bring good to the community. He was a charter member of the Grange, and was also affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Masons. Besides other public service he was a justice of the peace a number of years. Though largely self-educated, he had a remarkable memory, and experience gave him a fund of information and breadth of judgment, so that men naturally reposed their trust in his word and in his judgment. He was reared in the Quaker or Society of Friends, but later became a Presbyterian and was a deacon in the church in Kansas. Thomas Buckman passed away after a long and useful life in March, 1900.

Edward Buckman was about sixteen years of age when he journeyed to Kansas with other members of the family. He had received his early education in Alliance, Ohio, and he also attended school at Topeka. After school he took his place on his father’s farm, and made only one brief excursion outside of agriculture. That was in 1882, when he opened a grocery store on the southwest corner of Tenth and Topeka Avenues. With the burning of this store in 1885, he lost his entire investment, and then resumed farming, where a more abundant success awaited him. He took charge of the old homestead, then consisting of 240 acres, and later added to it until he owned and managed 400 acres, and with this as a foundation, and as a result of hard work and intelligent management, he gained the competency which enabled him in 1913 to retire and move to his city home in Topeka.

Mr. Buckman is an honest, straightforward citizen, stands on his own merits, and his fellow citizens in Shawnee County recognize that he is a man who can be trusted. For ten years he was a member of his local school board, served as township treasurer three years, and is now treasurer of School District No. 22 at College Hill. For twenty years he has been a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, is a member of the Grange and the Anti-Horse Thief Association. His wife is a member of the Christian Science Church.

On March 20, 1878, he married Mary L. Howe of Topeka. To their marriage were born six children, one of whom died in childhood. The others are all living in or around Topeka, their names being William Penn, Edward O., Ralph Addy, James Vernon and John Greenleaf.


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