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Biography of Charles W. Parker

Charles W. Parker is the world’s Napoleon in the manufacture of amusement devices. He lives in Kansas, had his immense plant, sometimes known as the “Wooden Horse Ranch,” at Leavenworth. He had been a resident of Kansas since he was an infant of five years. A philosopher may discover, if he can, any connection between the fact that he was brought to Kansas in one of the old fashioned movers or emigrant wagons, and the fact that his carnival outfits, shows, amusement machinery now circulate and travel to all parts of the habitable globe. He was born April 26, 1864, at Griggsville, Illinois. His father, Edwin Parker, was born in Scotland, came to America with his parents at the age of seven years, spent his early childhood in Canada, and subsequently accompanied his father to the State of Illinois, where the latter was a school teacher. Edwin W. Parker married Elizabeth E. Thackeray, a niece of William M. Trackeray, who wrote some of the great books that will always remain standard and classic in English literature. To their marriage were born seven children, five of whom are still living. In the spring of 1869 Edwin W. Parker brought his family to Kansas, traveling in a prairie schooner, and settling at the present town of Detroit in Dickinson County. That was far out on the western frontier, there were few settlers, and every hardship in the catalog of Kansas troubles had to be endured to some degree by the Parker family. Drought, grasshopper plagues and crop failures. Edwin Parker tried his hand at cattle raising, and after removing to Enterprise...

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