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Charles B. Skidmore. To attain success as a member of the Kansas bar requires more than ordinary ability which had been trained along the lines of the legal profession, as well as a vest fund of general information, and keen judgment with regard to men and their motives. In the big and pulsing communities of the Sunflower State there is so much competition, circumstances play such an important part in the shaping of events, and these events crowd each other so closely, that the legist had to be capable of grasping affairs with a competent hand to effect satisfactory results. Among those who have won recognition in this difficult field of endeavor is Charles B. Skidmore, for twenty-five years a Kansas attorney, and for a large part of this time engaged in practice at Columbus, his present location.
Mr. Skidmore was born in Vermilion County, Illinois, February 1, 1871, and is a son of James and Margaret (Ward) Skidmore. The Skidmore family had its founding in Scotland, and the first of the name, of this branch, to come to America settled at an early day in that part of Virginia now included within the borders of West Virginia. James Skidmore, the father of Charles B. Skidmore, was born in 1830 in (West) Virginia, and was there educated and reared to young manhood, when he made his way to Vermilion County, Illinois. A farmer and stockraiser by vocation, he was so engaged at the outbreak of the Civil war, when he enlisted in the Union army as a private in an Illinois volunteer infantry regiment. With that organization he fought for four years, taking part in numerous bloody and important engagements, but coming through safe to return to his farm. Mr. Skidmore remained in Illinois until 1875, in which year he came to Kansas and settled in Cherokee County, there continuing his agricultural operations until 1884. Since that time he had been a resident of Columbus, where for the first six years he was engaged in the implement business, but is now practically retired. He had led an active, industrious and useful life, and in whatever community he had centered his efforts had been held in high esteem because of the sterling qualities of his character. He had served as justice of the peace, and is active in the work of the Baptist Church, in which he had been a deacon for many years. In politics he is a democrat. Mr. Skidmore married Miss Margaret Ward, who was born in 1840, in New York, and died at Columbus, Kansas, in 1910. They were the parents of two children: Kittie, who married Mr. Cowan, and resided at Mountain Home, Idaho, where Mr. Cowan is engaged in the furniture and undertaking business; and Charles B., of this review. By a former marriage Mr. Skidmore had three children namely: Sallie, of Columbus, Kansas, widow of Mr. Mayhew, who was a farmer and filled the office of constable and other positions; Andrew H., who is a former judge and one of the best known members of the Cherokee County bar; and Mollie, who is the wife of James Radley, a Wyoming farmer and stockman.
Charles B. Skidmore received his education in the public schools of Cherokee County, where he attended high school, and at the age of seventeen years left the schoolroom as a student to re-enter it as a teacher. For several years he acted as educator in the rural districts of Cherokee County, but in the meantime pursued his studies diligently for the legal profession, and for some time read law in the office of his half-brother, Andrew H. Skidmore. In the fall of 1892 he was admitted to the bar of Kansas, and at once began practice at Columbus, where he continued for two years. Next Mr. Skidmore went to Baxter Springs for four years, and then to Galena, where he remained twelve years, finally returning to Columbus, where his broad experience and extensive training at once gained him recognition. He had since built up a large and representative practice which carries him into all of the courts, and is recognized as one of the reliable and thoroughly informed members of his profession practicing at the county seat. His offices are in the Logan Security Building. Among the members of his vocation, Mr. Skidmore is recognized as one who respects the best ethics of the profession, and as a valued associate and a dangerous opponent. He belongs to the various organizations gathered for mutual benefit and an elevation of standards in the profession, and is active in the work of the Commercial Club, of which he is a member. His political beliefs make him a republican, and his religious faith a Methodist.
Mr. Skidmore was married in 1895, at Baxter Springs, Kansas, to Miss Ada Chittenden, daughter of James and Ann (Peckenpaugh) Chittenden, the former of whom, a farmer, is now deceased, while the latter survives and is a resident of Spokane, Washington. Mr. and Mrs. Skidmore have two children: Edward E., born April 3, 1898, a junior in the Cherokee County High School, at Columbus; and James E. born February 17, 1902, a sophomore in the same institution.