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Biography of Henry W. Schroeder

Henry W. Schroeder has been in active business as a merchant at Chase for a quarter of a century, and now had the largest general store in that part of Rice County. His distinction rests not solely upon his business success, but also upon an active and public spirited performance of many public duties. Mr. Schroeder was born in Germany, February 1, 1872, but had lived in Kansas since he was seven years of age. His father, Fred Schroeder, born in Germany in 1848, brought his family to the United States in 1879, and first located at Great Bend, Kansas, but in 1880 moved to Ellinwood, where he died in 1902. He followed various lines of employment and for the last eight years of his life was city marshal of Ellinwood. He was a republican and a member of the Lutheran Church. His widow, Mary, who was born in Germany in 1844, still lives at Ellinwood. Henry W. was the oldest of their children. William is a tinner by trade and lives at Claflin, Kansas; Fred is a hardware merchant at Kiowa, Kansas; Maggie is the wife of Dr. E. Smith, a physician and surgeon at Oakland, California; Ella is a trained nurse at Cripple Creek, Colorado; Edward is employed in a store at Ellinwood. Henry W. Schroeder secured his early education in the public schools of Kansas, chiefly at Ellinwood. When about seventeen years of age he left school to become self supporting, and while employed in a local hardware store learned the tinsmith trade. He followed that trade at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for several years, but in 1892...

Biography of Talbert Jackson English

Talbert Jackson English, president of the First National Bank of Sterling, is one of the few mature business men and citizens who can claim Rice County as the place of their nativity. Mr. English had had an active business career in different lines, but for many years had been identified with the bank of which he is now the head. He was born near Sterling in Rice County, Kansas, November 20, 1874. His father is John McCollister English, who became widely known in this section of Kansas as a land owner and capitalist. The ancestry of this family goes back to Northern Ireland and is Scotch-Irish. In former generations the name was spelled Inglish. In 1798 two brothers and a sister of the family came to America and settled in Virginia. T. J. English’s grandfather was James Tolbert English, who was born in 1816. He lived in Chillicothe, Ohio; Sangamon County, Illinois; Danville, Illinois, and finally retired and came to Kansas, dying at Sterling in 1897. John McCollister English was born at Chillicothe, Ohio, in 1845, and was reared partly there and partly in Sangamon County, Illinois. For some years he was in the merchandise business at Mount Auburn, Indiana. In October, 1871, in a conveyance drawn by one horse, he and his little family started for Kansas. That was the very month that the great Chicago fire took place. In May, 1872, he settled on a farm in southwestern McPherson County, homesteading 160 acres. Then followed the usual struggles and heartbreaking experiences of the Kansan during the ’70s, and he not only suffered from drought, but his house...

Biography of William Christee Smyser

William Christee Smyser, who died at Sterling, Kansas, August 9, 1917, had been for thirty-five years a resident of that section of the state. Few men have assumed and carried out to such a successful conclusion the larger responsibilities of business affairs. One of the outstanding characteristics of big business men is a quiet efficiency of performance that handles a great volume of work with a notable absence of noise and confusion. This quiet efficiency was a mark of Mr. Smyser’s entire career. Under his direction large affairs were transacted and things got themselves done in the form of concrete results, but in such a way as to attract little notice to the source of the power and energy. The foundation of his business success was laid during his connection with the broom corn industry of Western Kansas. For a number of years he was one of the most extensive dealers in this crop, buying in carload lots. After he gave this up he concentrated all his time upon the buying and feeding of sheep, and was undoubtedly one of the biggest producers of mutton and wool in the State of Kansas. He amassed a large property in farm land and always lived in close touch with the soil. He was a student of farming from its scientific as well as practical point of view. He knew and understood soils, and seldom made an error in adapting his crops and his business to the variations of soil and climate. William Christie Smyser was born at Milford, Ohio, September 5, 1839, and at the time of his death his age...

Biography of Charles M. Branch

Charles M. Branch, a resident of Kansas since 1873, is a banker of thirty years experience and is president of the Citizens Bank of Hutchinson, one of the few institutions in the state with resources of over $1,000,000. Mr. Branch was born at Vinton, Benton County, Iowa, September 27, 1859. His English ancestors first settled in Vermont, and his grandfather, Minor Branch, moved his family from that state to Northern Indiana in pioneer times, and died in Indiana before Charles M. Branch was born. Phineas C. Branch, father of the Hutchinson banker, was one of the pioneer homesteaders of Reno County, Kansas. He was born in Vermont in 1825, spent part of his boyhood in his native state, and went with his parents to LaPorte County, Indiana, where he grew to manhood. He married at Galena, Illinois, and soon afterwards moved to Vinton County, Iowa, where he located on a farm. In 1861 he enlisted as a private in the Thirteenth Regiment of Iowa Infantry and was all through the war, a faithful soldier in practically every engagement in which his regiment participated. He was in many of the important campaigns of the Middle West and fought at Shiloh and Vicksburg. After the war he took up dentistry, practicing both at Vinton, Iowa, and Galena, Illinois. In 1873, coming to Kansas, he exercised his old soldier’s rights and homesteaded 160 acres near Peace in Reno County. That homestead he developed as a farm and continued to live upon it until a few years before his death. He also preempted a 160-acre timber claim and had the 320 acres as...

Biography of Robert Dinsmore

Robert Dinsmore, whose interests in Rice County and the City of Lyons cover a long period of years, had been successful both as a merchant and farmer, and represents a solid and substantial old family in Western Kansas. Mr. Dinsmore was born in Pike County, Illinois, August 27, 1863. The paternal ancestry had been in America since colonial days and it is recalled that a Lord Dinsmore of another branch of the same family accompanied General Lafayette on the latter’s second visit to the United States. Robert Dinsmore’s grandfather was also named Robert, and in the early years of the last century went from Kentucky to Iowa and soon afterwards to Pike County, Illinois, where he spent the rest of his days as a farmer and died in 1884. Hiram Dinsmore, father of Robert, was born in Kentucky in 1839 and was still a boy when his parents settled in Pike County, Illinois, where he grew up and married. He was a merchant, miller and farmer in Illinois and in 1862 he enlisted in Company E of the Fiftieth Illinois Infantry and saw active service in the war until its close. Most of his service was in the campaigns along the Mississippi River. In September, 1878, he arrived in Kansas, traveling by railroad as far as Sterling and then driving across the country to Lyons. In this then frontier section he bought the northeast quarter of section 10, township 20, range 8, a mile south and a half mile east of Lyons. That land was part of his possessions until his death but the estate subsequently sold it. Having...

Biography of Herbert K. Lindsley

Herbert K. Lindsley. Recognized as one of the leading commercial centers of the West, the City of Wichita has advanced rapidly in recent years along particular lines. Its geographical location and railroad facilities have made it the largest market in the world for broom corn. In the handling of broom corn, an important figure is Herbert K. Lindsley, president of the American Warehouse Company, whose career is typical of modern progress and advancement. It is not necessary to seek far for the reason for his success, or his indefatigable energy, close application and progressive methods have not only laid the foundation for the enterprise which he has built up, but have led him into other lines of endeavor, in which he has attained equal recognition and reward. Mr. Lindsley was born at Muncie, Indiana, June 21, 1875. When he was three years of age he was taken by his parents to Sterling, Kansas, where he received his education, and after graduating from the high school of that place, clerked for three years and for a few years thereafter was agent for the Pacific Express Company at Sterling. He then engaged in the broom corn business at Sterling, that town being at the time the largest broom corn market in the West. In 1904 he came to Wichita, where he was the first to engage in the broom corn business, and subsequently became the organizer and was elected president of the American Warehouse Company of Wichita, a $300,000 corporation for the handling of broom corn. This is the largest concern of the kind in the world, and has branch offices...
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