Biography of Howard J. Hodgson
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Howard J. Hodgson, who had practiced law at Eureka since 1888, had gained a strong hold on the business, professional and civic affairs of his home county, and is one of the prominent Kansans of today. Mr. Hodgson had lived in this state since he was six years of age, his people being pioneers of Greenwood County.
He is a native of Canada, having been born near Lindsay in County Victoria, Ontario, October 6, 1863. His grandfather, John Hodgson, was born in England in 1795, and as a young man immigrated to Canada and spent his active years as a farmer in the Province of Ontario. When an old man he came to Kansas, and lived retired at Eureka until his death in April, 1871.
Jonathan Hodgson, father of Howard J., was for many years an influential and substantial citizen of Greenwood County. He was born in Ontario, Canada, in 1827, was reared and married there, and was a sawyer by trade. On March 1, 1869, he arrived at Lawrence, Kansas, and three weeks later reached Greenwood Gounty, where he homesteaded 160 acres of land. He and his family had all the early day experiences of the Kansas people of the ’70s and ’80s, and he was one of the men who came out of those critical times with the credit of having made a home and ample provision for those dependent upon him and having prospered to an unusual degree. He followed farming and stock raising, and at the time of his death was the owner of 1,000 acres. He died at Eureka June 9, 1901. After becoming an American citizen he allied himself with the republican party. He was a prominent member of the Congregational Church in Greenwood County, assisted in organizing the church at Eureka, and always supported it liberally. He served it as deacon for a number of years. Jonathan Hodgson married Elizabeth Glenney, who was born near Dublin, Ireland, in 1828, and died at Eureka, Kansas, in 1910. Her parents came to America in 1838, when she was ten years of age, and settled in County Victoria, Ontario, where as a girl she became acquainted with Jonathan Hodgson. These worthy people became the parents of a large family of children, and the record of these children is a splendid tribute to the character of their parents. Harriet, who now resided at Kansas City, Missouri, is the widow of the late E. L. Gould, who was a farmer and stockman in Greenwood County and was serving as county treasurer at the time of his death. Martha, who reaides at Eureka, Kansas, is the widow of A. A. Baldwin, who was very suecessful as a farmer and stock raiser, and died in Greenwood County in 1914. Moses Wealey met an accidental death when a young man, being kicked by a horse. Cyrus Clark also had an aecidental death, being killed in 1907 while rlding on a load of lumber near Walters, Oklahoma. He fell off the lumber and under the horses feet, and died as a result of the injuries. Margaret V. is still single and resided at Sleeper, Missouri. Will F. is a farmer and grain dealer and had an elevator at Eureka. Emma E. married O. F. Gould, a retired farmer and banker at Eureka. Mand M. is the wife of Harlan W. Barrier, a farmer and stockman at Sleeper, Missouri. The ninth in the family is Howard J. Hodgson. Nellie E. died young. Alfred Ernest is a graduate of the Kansas Normal College at Fort Scott and is now a practicing attorney at Seattle, Washington.
The boyhood recollections of Howard J. Hodgson center around the old homestead farm in Greenwood County. He attended such schools as were supported in the community, and finished his literary education by graduating in 1886 from the Kansas Normal College at Fort Scott. After teaching a four months’ term in Butler County he entered enthusiastically upon the study of law in the office of Capt. Ira P. Nye, of Eureka. In May, 1888, he was admitted to the bar, and since that date had been steadily building up a clientage and a reputation as a civil and criminal lawyer at Eureka. His offices are in the Citizens National Bank Building.
Besides the practice of law Mr. Hodgson had acquired extensive business interests. He is the owner of farms in Greenwood County to the aggregate of 5,500 acres, and through the development of this land had contributed a great deal to the substantial prosperity of the community. He also owned a garage on Main Street, a storo building on the same street, and had one of the finest locations for a residence in the city.
Mr. Hodgson in politics is a republican of the old stamp, loyal to the principles and policies which guided that great organization through the time of trial in national affairs and thoroughly believes in the wholesomeness of the ideals of republicanism. In 1916 he was a candidate for Congress, and had taken an active part in county and state conventions. Fraternally Mr. Hodgson is affiliated with Fidelity Lodge No. 106, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Queen Bess Chapter No. 56, Order of the Eastern Star, and he is a well known member of the Kansas State Bar Association.
On November 27, 1890, at Eureka, he married Miss Della Penwell, who died September 5, 1893, survived by one daughter, Veda E., who lives at home with herfather and was graduated A. B. from Washburn College in 1915. On November 7, 1905, at Topeka, Mr. Hodgson married Miss Bertha Penwell, a sister of his former wife. Her parents, J. N. and Frances (Harmon) Penwell, now reside at Eureka, her father being a retired farmer and stockman. By the second marriage there have been two children: Mary Helene, who died at the age of seven months, and Helen Lorine, who was born August 16, 1912.