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Biography of Ralph Chester Dixon

Ralph Chester Dixon. While many of the successful men represented in this publication have found their work as farmers, eattle men, merchants, bankers and in the professions, Ralph Chester Dixon had directed his energies practically along one line since leaving college and had made a notable success as a fruit grower and horticulturist in the vicinity of Arkansas City. He had a splendid fruit farm three miles northwest of the city, and is one of the leading commercial apple growers of the state. Mr. Dixon is a native of Kansas, born at Caldwell August 5, 1875. His people have lived in America for a number of generations. The Dixons came originally out of Ireland and were colonial settlers in Maryland. Until the Civil war the Dixons were slave holders. Mr. Dixon’s grandfather, Benjamin Harrison Dixon, was born near Church Creek, Maryland, in 1812, grew up and married there, and then came West and settled near St. Joseph, Missouri. He was there before the railroad, and St. Joseph was chiefly Important as a river town and a supply point for the West. He acquired a large estate and became a shipping contractor, sending freight across the plains to the Rocky Mountains and further. He owned slaves, and early in the Civil war, because of that fact and because of his pronounced Southern sympathies, was driven out of Missouri and went to the vacant prairles of Nebraska. He died at Caldwell, Kansas, in 1884. He married Aurelia Wilcox, who died near St. Joseph, Missouri. Five of the children of these grandparents are still living, namely: Charles B., a farmer near Ponca...

Biography of Simon P. Kramer

Simon P. Kramer. During the greater part of the years since 1880, Simon P. Kramer had been a resident of Kansas and had been identified with the milling industry. He is one of the oldest flour millers in the state and had operated in many different towns. In 1915 he removed to Topeka, where he bought and reorganized the Topeka Flour Mills Company, of which he is now president. He had now one of the finest mills in equipment and service in this section of the state. It is equipped throughout with Allis-Chalmers machinery and only recently he gave an order for an oil burning engine to replace the old engine. Mr. Kramer is a thoroughly progressive and alert business man, and under his administration he intends to make the Topeka mills one of the finest plants of the kind in the Middle West. His business interests have taken him to many states, and he had been more or less on the move ever since early manhood. But contrary to the old proverb he had accumnlated a generous share of material prosperity while going from place to place, He was born in Wooster, Wayne County, Ohio, February 15, 1858, one of the twelve children of Jacob and Mary (Miller) Kramer. His father was also a miller by trade, and spent his lifetime in that occupation. He conducted a water power mill on his own farm back in Ohio, and died there in December, 1883. With an early education asquired in the common schools of Wayne County, Ohio, Simon P. Kramer at the same time acquired more or less of...

Biography of William H. Smith

William H. Smith. It is almost a half century that had crept around on the world’s clock since William H. Smith, one of Chanute’s substantial and respected citizens, came to Kansas, locating in Neosho County, where at present he is held in high esteem with the Old Settlers’ Association, of which he is president. With interest he had watched this section develop and had assisted very materially, ever lending his influence to law and order, encouraging the investment of capital, and setting an industrious example that might very profitably be emulated. William H. Smith was born January 25, 1846, in Warren County, Ohio. His parents were Samuel M. and Phebe (Wharton) Smith. The early records of the Smith family show that in colonial times there were pioneering members who dared the dangers of the deep and crossed the Atlantic Ocean from England to America, finding harbor in New Jersey, and from these descended Abram C. Smith, who was the grandfather of William H. Smith of Chanute, Kansas. He was born in New Jersey in 1781, was a quiet, peaceful farmer who removed with his family to Warren County, Ohio, in 1835 and died there in 1867. The family were Quakers. Samuel M. Smith, father of William H., was born near Camden, New Jersey, in 1817, and died at the latter’s home at Chanute, in February, 1902. He came to Kansas in the fall of 1884 and lived practically retired until his death. In politics he was a republican and fraternally was an Odd Fellow, being past noble grand in that order. He was married to Phebe Wharton, who was...

Grider, Waitsville – Obituary

La Grande, Union County, Oregon Grider Laid To Rest Vetern Buried Yesterday With Family and Friends Attending Funeral services were said yesterday over the remains of Waitsville Grider who died early in the week. Three generations, descendents of the deceased, were in attendance at the funeral. Death resulted from cancer. Waitsville Grider was married to Minerva S. Beard August 1st, 1851, in Adair county, KY. He was born and raised in that section and their home was made there for a time, later moving with his family to Watson, MO., in September, 1878. Then he went to Caldwell, Kansas, from where he came west to La Grande in April, 1908. Mr. Grider enrolled in the army September, 1861, in the 19th regiment Kentucky volunteers, and was discharged in 1865. he was the father of 12 children and was survived by seven of them, all of whom were by his bedside during his illness, except one is in Alaska and could not be communicated with. His children included: Fannie Stepp of Boise, Lizzie Brown of Portland, Mollie Buck, R. B. Grider and W. T. Grider of la Grande He had 21 grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren, and five of his grandchildren attended the funeral. Mrs. Mollie Buck’s two daughters and three children of C. L. Grider making these five. La Grande Evening Observer, December 20, 1912, Front Page Contributed by:Sue...

Biographical Sketch of Draper, M.R.

M. R. Draper, manager of the Dodge City branch of the York, Parker & Draper Mercantile Company. The company was incorporated under the laws of Missouri in 1881, with a paid-up capital of $150,000. Now have a surplus of $150,000. They deal in general merchandise and livestock, and carry a general average stock of merchandise of $25,000 in Dodge City, Kansas, and opened trade in the latter city in 1881. They also have a branch house at Caldwell, Sumner County, Kansas. Their rooms are 25 feet wide by 110 feet deep, and a warehouse 25 x 75 feet. They have a stock ranch in the Pan Handle of Texas, where they keep at present 15,000 head of cattle on a range 12×20 miles. They employ twenty-five men. F. B. York is President; M. R. Draper, Vice-President; D. T. Parker, Secretary and Treasurer. M. R. Draper, manager of the Dodge City House, came to the latter city in 1876. He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, February 23, 1850, and was raised in his native State. He came to Kansas in 1865, located near Leavenworth. He engaged in agricultural pursuits until 1870. He then went into the employ of Parker, York & Co., at Parker, Montgomery County, Kansas, and continued until 1873; thence went to St. Louis, Mo., and there engaged with the United States Express Company and continued until he came to Dodge City. He was married April 23, 1877, to Miss Cora E. Collins, of St. Louis, Mo. They have one daughter, Cora E. Draper. His wife died November 2,...

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