Biography of Rev. John Dunbar

Rev. John Dunbar was a missionary to the Pawnes Indians of the West for a period of more than twenty years before he became a resident of Kansas. He spent a little over a year in the territory and, as its first treasurer, assisted in the organization of Brown County. Mr. Dunbar was a native of Palmer, Massachusetts, born March 3, 1804. In 1832 he was graduated at Williams College, and later at the Auburn Theological Seminary. While a student at the latter institution he received an appointment as missionary to the western Indians; was ordained at Ithaca, New York, May 1, 1834, and on the 5th left there, with instructions to cross the Rocky Mountains to the Nez Perces. Upon arriving at St. Louis on the 23d, he learned that the party of traders with whom he was to travel had already left for the West, but was informed at the same time that the Pawnee tribe needed missionaries, and he decided to go there. As soon as possible he reported at the agency at Bellevue, nine miles above the mouth of the Platte River, on the west bank of the Missouri, and began his work as missionary. In September, 1836, he returned to Massachusetts, and while there superintended the printing of a book of seventy-four pages in the Pawnee language. On Jannary 12, 1837, he married Miss Esther Smith, and the following spring returned to Bellevue, where he and his wife began housekeeping in an old trading house. Later he went to Holt County, Missouri, but preferring a residence in a free state, and confident that Kansas was to be admitted as such, he moved to Brown County, Kansas, in 1856, and located on the Wolf River, about two miles west of the Town of Robinson. On March 16, 1857, he was appointed the first treasurer to the Board of County Commissioners. But neither Mr. Dunbar nor his wife lived long after their removsl to Kansas. She died on November 4, 1856, and his death occurred on November 3d of the following year.



MLA Source Citation:

Connelley, William E. A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans. Chicago : Lewis, 1918. 5v. Biographies can be accessed from this page: Kansas and Kansans Biographies. AccessGenealogy.com. Web. 30 September 2014. http://www.accessgenealogy.com/kansas/biography-of-rev-john-dunbar.htm - Last updated on Oct 5th, 2012

Contribute to the Conversation!

Our "rules" are simple. Keep the conversation on subject and mind your manners! If this is your first time posting, we do moderate comments before we let them appear... so give us a while to get to them. Once we get to know you here, we'll remove that requirement.

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Newsletter Signup

We currently provide two newsletters. Why not take both for a run?

Genealogy Update: We send out this newsletter whenever we feature a new, or significantly updated, collection or database on our website.

Circle of Nations: We send out this newsletter whenever we feature a new (or significantly updated) Native American collection or database on our website.

Once you've clicked on the Subscribe button above you'll receive an email from us requesting confirmation. You must confirm the email before you will be able to receive any newsletter.