Frank P. MacLennan is a fortunate man. Kansas is fortunate in having him as a citizen. As a youth he took from this state the raw materials which by the alehemy of a resourceful and independent mind and a vigorous ambition he transmuted into a career which has been of even greater beneflt to the state than it has been to himself. First and last Mr. MacLennan is a newspaper man. He knows how to write, especially when the subject is something not directly counected with himself. In furnishing the data to the editor of this new History of Kansas self-respect and modesty kept the copy boy waiting longer than he ever does when called upon for editorials or column articles on the most diverse subjects and topics. What is said in the following paragraphs concerniug him is partly in his own words, and partly such comment as seems appropriate to a better understanding of the man and his work. He was born March 1, 1855, in Springfield, Ohio, and lived in that state until at the age of fifteen his parents, Kenneth and Adelia M. (Bliss) MacLennan, moved to Emporia, Kansas. Though the facts are simply told, there is a great deal of moral inspiration in the story of his early eareer. “When I was a boy at Springfield I hung around the printing offices, folded papers and...Read More
Collection: A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans
John S. Dean, of Topeka, has been a Kansas lawyer for over thirty years, was for five years United States district attorney and by the force of his ability and his acknowledged service in many capacities is undoubtedly one of the foremost living lawyers of the state. His birth occurred in Seneca County, Ohio, November 11, 1861, and he is a son of William O. and Harriet J. (Curtiss) Dean. Mr. Dean was well educated, having attended college at Oberlin and determined upon the law as a profession when quite young. He became a student in the office of Judge James Pillars at Tiffin, Ohio, and in 1883, at the age of twenty-two, took the examination before the Ohio State Supreme Court. He was admitted to the bar, and in the same year came west to Kansas and established his home and office at Marion. Being well grounded in the principles of law, a hard worker, and possessing natural qualifications to an unusual degree for his chosen profession, success followed almost as a matter of course. It is likely that he would have made a success of medicine, the ministry or in commercial lines, for he is the type of man who would succeed in almost any environment and in any line of endeavor he might select. In the language of a well known citizen of Kansas Mr. Dean...Read More
John P. Hatterscheidt, of Leavenworth County, was a German by birth who came from Cincinnati to Kansas in the spring of 1857. He did much work in the territory as an engineer and surveyor. In 1858 he served as a delegate to the Leavenworth constitutional convention. All the Germans were freesoilers and Hatterscheidt was an acknowledged leader among them. In the spring of 1859 he returned to Cincinnati, where he is reported to have died. Another account of his later years is that he made quite an impression on Abraham Lincoln when he visited Kansas; that when elected President he selected Hatterscheidt as a consul at some European point, and that he died...Read More
In the words of his biographer, Preston B. Plumb was a pioneer in Kansas. He was one of the founders of Emporia. He was in the Union army, and both major and lieutenant-colonel of the Eleventh Kansas. He was long United States senator from Kansas. In the Senate he was one of the men who accomplished things. He was the father of the ides of the conservation of the natural resources of America. It was his law that created the National Forest Reserve and extended aid to irrigation and the reclamation of arid lands. Many of the laws on the national statute books were put there by Preston B. Plumb. He was a great man and a great Kansan. No attempt can be made to cover fully the life of this great Kansan in a brief sketch. Here will be found only those details which are the frame work of biography and some reference to the larger work of which his life was an expression. Preston B. Plumb was born at Berkshire, Delaware County, Ohio, October 12, 1837. His parents, David Plumb and Hannah Maria (Bierce) Plumb, were of old New England families, their respective parents having come as pioneers into Ohio. David Plumb was a wagonmaker. As a boy young Plumb put in part of his time in his father’s shop. At the age of twelve, having made...Read More
Amos Hinsdale Plumb is one of the children of the late Senator Preston B. Plumb and Caroline (Southwick) Plumb. He was born at Emporia, January 31, 1869, He was educated in the public schools of Emporia and the Kansas State University at Lawrence. Mr. Plumb’s chief business activities have been in real estate and mining. He organized and is president of the Mutual Building and Loan Association of Emporia, and during 1915-17 was president of the building and loan section of the Kansas Bankers’ Association. He was married at Omaha, Nebraska, January 1, 1897, to Elva Lawrence Gibson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Gibson of Omaha. They have one daughter, Roxanna...Read More
Capt. John Hamilton, acting under orders from Gen. Zachary Taylor, founded Fort Scott, Kansas, in 1842. He was a native of Pennsylvania, a soldier in the regular army, and first came to Kansas as a youth of nineteen and a United States dragoon, stationed at Fort Leavenworth. In 1842, as a sergeant of the First Dragoons, under Capt. Benjamin D. Moore, he left Fort Wayne, Cherokee Nation, to assist in selecting a site and to establish a military post in Kansas. There wore twenty men in the party and, after selecting the ground, the captain and surgeon of the expedition, detailed directly under Sergeant Hamilton, returned to Fort Wayne, leaving the execution of the work to the latter. Sergeant Hamilton himself cut the first tree on the site of Fort Scott on the 9th of April, 1842, an additional working force was sent in the following month, and in June Captain Moore, with two companies of the First Dragoons, arrived to take command of the post. Maj. William M. Graham and Capt. Thomas Swords were afterwards placed in command, Hamilton being quartermaster sergeant under the latter. He was then appointed ordnance sergeant by the secretary of war and ordered to Fort Jessup, Louisiana. After serving his term of enlistment in the army Sergeant Hamilton returned to Fort Scott in March, 1855, and became a permaneut resident of that place....Read More
Atlantic A. Moore, during the twenty-four years that he resided in Kansas, assisted in the founding of Marion County and became a familiar and respected figure in both houses of the State Legislature. He was familiarly known as “Lank” Moore. A native of Ohio, he came to Wankegan, Illinois, as a boy, living there and in Wisconsin until he “entered the government service” with his brother, as a driver of ambulances from Kansas City to Santa Fe. Not caring to settle in that part of the Southwest, they started on their return in the fall of the same year. At Cottonwood Crossing (now Durham, Kansas) on the Santa Fe trail, a man named Smith had built a small log cabin and was running a trading post, selling whisky, canned goods and other provisions to passing trains. The Moore brothers bought out the place, and later took up a claim at what became known as Moore’s Ranch. In the spring of 1861 a postoffice was established there, with A. A. Moore as postmaster. That year the Town of Marion Center was also laid out, and there Mr. Moore built a store and otherwiso identified himself with the growth of the place. Upon the organization of Marion County in 1865 he was elected county treasuror and representative; was returned to the Legislature in 1867; served in the State Senate in 1868,...Read More
James F. Legate was a leading citizen of Leavenworth for nearly forty years, and during the active period of his life few men in the state were better known in legislative affairs. He was a native of Massachusetts, born in Worcester County, November 23, 1829, in the house built by his paternal ancestor five generations preceding him, and on land deeded to that ancestry by the Engilsh government in the reign of George H. His father was a captain in command of a privateer in the War of 1812, and on both maternal and paternal sides were numerous representatives of the patriot cause. After a short course in law Mr. Legate went to Mississippi, where he taught school, entered politics and in 1852, as a member of the State Legislature, espoused the cause of Senator Foote against Jefferson Davis. In 1854, while in Washington, Mr. Legate met Mr. Davis, then secretary of war, who gave him a letter to Col. E. V. Sumner, stationed at Fort Leavenworth, but when he arrived in Kansas in July and “looked around” he decided to make Lawrence his home. He was active in his espousal of the freestate cause, and was elected to the First House of Representatives under the Wyandotte constitution. In the following year he was appointed United States assessor, and in November, 1863, he moved to Leavenworth, which remained his...Read More
David Gladstone Page, son of Thomas Page, whose career as one of the leading millers of Kansas has been sketched on preceding pages, is a native of Topeka, and for the past fifteen years has been closely identifled with the Page milling interests of that city. He was born January 7, 1881, at the family home at 831 North Quincy Street in Topeka. His early training was acquired in the public schools, and in 1899 he graduated from the Topeka High School. After two years as a farmer he entered his father’s office in 1900, and for a number of years has held the position of secretary of the Thomas Page Milling Company and is the wheat buyer and sales manager for the firm. In 1912 David G. Page married Miss Mary Sherrard Kerr of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her father, Dr. David Ramsay Kerr, is a widely known educator. In May, 1916, he was elected president of Bellevue College at Omaha, Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Page are the parents of two sons: Thomas Page and David Ramsay...Read More
For upwards of half a century, Thomas Page has been one of the prominent commercial figures in Kansas. With possibly one exception, he is the oldest miller in the state, and for years has been a factor in the milling and grain interests and as much as any other individual has contributed to make Topeka a center for the manufacture of flour. A native of Scotland, he was born in the little manufacturing hamlet of Dunshalt in Fifeshire, September 3, 1843. With a practical schooling he began an apprenticeship in the milling business. For some time he was employed in a mill on the River Clyde, where he daily witnessed the arrival and departure of some of the great ocean vessels which brought to him all the sense of mystery and the messages of far off lands which the sight of them inspires. No doubt it was the vessels plying between America and Great Britain that gave him his first definite idea of making the United States his future home. It was in 1866, when he was twenty-three years of age, that he took passage on one of these vessels for America. Not long after his arrival he found employment at his trade in Albany, New York. Then in 1869 he started westward, for a short time worked in Peoria and for a longer time at Rockford, Illinois. At...Read More
Otis B. Gunn was a native of Massachusetts, born at Montague, October 27, 1828, and before he came west as a railroad engineer, had served as rodman on the Hoosac Tunnel Railroad and superintendent of the construction work of the line between Rochester and Niagara Falls. In 1853 he was appointed division engineer in the building of the Toledo, Wabash and Western, and followed railroad construction westward until he settled at Wyandotte, Kansas, in 1857. He was a member of the 1861 State Senate, and while thus serving was appointed major of the Fourth Kansas, later the Tenth Kansas Infantry. Resigning in May, 1862, he resumed railroad work, being connected, at varions times, with the Kansas City and Cameron, Leavenworth, Pawnee and Western Central Branch of the Union Pacific, and the Missouri, Kansas and Texas. Of the road last named he built 600 miles; also constructed the bridge across the Missouri River at Atehison, and in 1876 constructed the union depot in Kansas City. In view of these unadorned facts, it is perhaps needless to add that Mr. Gunn was one of the leading engineers of the West. He died in Kansas City, February 18, 1901, and was buried in Oak Grove,...Read More
Harry R. Whittelsey, president and manager of The Whittelsey Mercantile Company, which operates a chain of grocery stores in Topeka, and is one of the largest retail grocery firms in the state. A native of Redbank, New Jersey, Harry R. Whittelsey has been a resident of Topeka since. November 1, 1881, at which time he was a boy of thirteen. He was born December 5, 1868, a son of William Channcey and Grace M. (Hindes) Whittelsey. Of the six children there were four sons, Louis, Burt, Harry and William, Jr. The Whittelsey family were very prominent in the East. Grandfather W. C. Whittelsey was the first senior surgeon general of the United States navy, and held that office for a number of years. Harry Whittelsey’s maternal graudfather Hindes was a prominent lawyer of Littletown, New Hampshire, was the first librarian of the city library there, and during the War of 1812 he gave the United States Government $60,000 in cash. In return he received a warrant for a tract of land in Virginia. His heirs lost this property, since the records were burned with the court house, and being lost the heirs were not able to prove conclusively either the right to the land or its location. W. C. Whittelsey, father of Harry R., was educated in district schools and in a college in the South. During the Civil...Read More
Perhaps Luther C. Challis, nearly forty years a citizen of Atchison, is best known as a pioneer railroad man. He was born in New Jersey January 26, 1829, and for some years before moving West was engaged in business in Philadelphia and Boonville, Missouri. In 1855 he located in Atchison and joined his brother as one of the first merchants of that town. He afterward became a banker, and maintained a profitable ferry across the Missouri River until the building of the bridge in 1875. Mr. Challis was elected to a seat in the Territorial Council of 1857-58, made vacant by the resignation of Joseph P. Carr in January, 1858. He is generally conceded to be the father of the Central Branch of the Union Pacifie Railroad, having framed the bill to authorize its construction, secured its passage, and negotiated the treaty with the Kickapoo Indians for securing its right-of-way through their territory. Mr. Challis was also one of the incorporators of the Atchison & St. Joseph Railway, the first railroad built in the state, and one of the founders of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe. He died in Atchison, July 26,...Read More
Various members of the Jewell family have been well known at Fort Scott and vicinity for many years. Both Col. Lewis R. and his son, by the same name, were active, and the father quite prominent, in the days of the Civil war. He came of old Massachusetts lineage, moved to Ohio early in life, and while a resident of Washington County married Susan Hutchinson. Mr. Jewell became interested in river transportation, and when he moved to St. Louis, several years before the war, was the owner of several boats plying the Mississippi and Ohio, and had reached the rank of “Captain.” In 1859 Captain Jewell located in the central strip of Kansas near Arcadia, and there established himself as a farmer and stock-raiser. By the vigorous resistance of settlers, in which he was a leader, the aggressive Cherokecs were barred from the country, but to make their tenure more secure a delegation of the whites was sent to Washington to seek Government backing and to protect the settlement of a large contemplated colony from the East. The captain was one of this delegation, but before anything definite was accomplished the Civil war broke like a sudden storm on the country, and colonization and all else were thrust aside in face of the great danger and disaster. Captain Jewell had been known as a strong democrat, and some had...Read More
Within the limits of Kansas there is probably no better informed insurance man than Lewis T. Hussey, who is now filling the responsible position of state fire marshal at Topeka. Mr. Hussey is the only son of Jerry Hussey of Williamsburg, reference to whom is made on other pages. Born in Clermont County, Ohio, November 19, 1866, Lewis T. Hussey came with his parents to Kansas when two years old, and in his early life imbibed the spirit of Kansas prairie. His youth was spent on a farm, where he learned all the duties of a Kansas country place during the ’80s, and his education came from the distrist schools and from the Burlington High School, where he was graduated in 1888. However, his real life work has been in the field of insurance. While his father was register of deeds of Osage County he served as deputy until 1893, and he then established in Kansas what was known as the Metropolitan Aceident Association, which subsequently became the Continental Casualty Company, and Mr. Hussey represented it as state agent. For nearly twenty-five years he has been active in the insurance business, and has also rendered important service as an adjuster of fire losses. In 1908 with others he organized the Osage Fire Insurance Company, of which he was one of the directors, a member of the executive committee and...Read More
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