Discover your family's story.

Enter a grandparent's name to get started.

Start Now

Biography of Robert E. Lawrence

Robert E. Lawrence was one of the pioneers and one of the important upbuilders of the City of Wichita. The land he pre-empted from the Government and used for farming and stock raising purposes many years is now included within the city limits, and much of it is built over with residences, business houses and institutions. By strenuous effort and much self denial in early days, he acquired a liberal prosperity, but dispensed it liberally and left his impress on much of the city’s progress. He was of New England birth and ancestry, and was born at Canaan, Connecticut, December 17, 1847. He died at Wichita January 28, 1911, after a long and useful career. He grew up on a farm, graduated from a boarding school in Southwestern Massachusetts, and at the age of twenty-two, in 1869, started for the West. He left Massachusetts with only $2.50 in money. He possessed some of the Yankee ingenuity and commercial faculties which enabled him to get along in all conditions and among all sorts of people and carn a respectable livelihood. He paid his way as far as Neponset, Illinois, by selling stencils. During the winter spent at Neponset he taught school, and saved enough of his earnings to buy a pair of horses. These horses he drove through to Wichita and arrived in that frontier village in May, 1870. He at once preempted 160 acres and made that the scene of his first undertaking as a Kansas farmer. That 160 acres now surrounds the Kansas State Masonic Home, and the home and grounds occupy a portion of his original quarter...

Biography of Thomas J. White

Thomas J. White, a lawyer of high standing in both Kansas City, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri, had been a resident of Kansas forty-eight years. He had his experience as an early homesteader, was in railway service for a number of years, and gained a very thorough knowledge of public men and national politics in his relationship as confidential clerk to Senator Ingalls. He had been a lawyer for nearly thirty-five years. Mr. White was born at Whitstable, a town on the seacoast in County Kent, England, January 27, 1842. He was the second in a family of seven children born to Joseph and Jane (Collar) White. He was the only member of the family to come to America. His father Joseph was a sea captain. Mr. White was reared in England and in the English schools and largely through his own persistence and studious habits acquired a good education. While in England he learned shorthand. He acquired proficiency in this by arduous work often by candle light, and also commenced the reading of law. He married in England, and two years later, in 1867, determined to seek his fortune in the New World. After landing in New York he proceeded West, settling for a time in Illinois and taught a term or so of school at Neponset in Illinois. In 1869, with his wife and in company with two other families he left Illinois, journeyed by railroad to St. Joseph, Missouri, and from there by horse and wagon, overland to Washington County, Kansas. He homesteaded a claim of 160 acres. He and his family lived in a small...

Biography of Otis T. Dyer

No historical work claiming to he a true record of the growth and prosperity of Riverside for the decade of years preceding 1890, and claiming to record the establishment of many enterprises, industries and incorporations that have been the leading factor in placing her in the ranks of the leading cities and colonies of Southern California, could be considered as anything but glaringly incomplete without a more than passing mention of the gentleman whose name heads this sketch. His association and connection with Riverside’s leading enterprises form an interesting chapter in the annals of the city and county. Mr. Dyer’s life, since Riverside received its first impetus, has been closely interwoven with every important enterprise or movement that tended to benefit the city and add to the welfare and prosperity of the community. The few facts obtained relating to his life and successful career are of interest. He was born in Portage, Genesee County, New York, in 1844. His parents were Leman W. and Philena (Green) Dyer. His father was a native of the Green Mountain State, and was a mechanic, a marble and granite worker by calling. When the subject of this sketch was four years of age his father moved to New London, Connecticut, and it was there where young Dyer received his early education, in the public schools. In the winter of 1857-’58, his father becoming dissatisfied with his success in the East, moved to Illinois, where he located in Stark County. The family were commencing to get settled and accustomed to their new home, and everything progressing in an even tenor, when the father, in...

Pin It on Pinterest