James R. Frizzell, now living retired at Halstead, came to Kansas over thirty years ago, and for many years was actively identified with farming and the dairy business.
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He was born in Montville Township of Medina County, Ohio, February 27, 1847. He is of old American and Irish stock. At the time of the reign of King Charles I of England some members of the original Scotch clan of Fraziers displayed such active interest in the political troubles of the time that they were compelled to seek refuge in America, and on their immigration they changed the name to Frizzell. A particular member of the family who came to Massachusetts at that time was James Frizzell, who arrived in 1653 and settled in what is now a suburb of Boston. The grandfather of James R. Frizzell was Elijah Frizzell, who was born in Massachusetts and went from there to a farm at Canaan, Vermont, where he died in the ’60s.
Lysander Frizzell, father of James R., was born in Franklin County, Massachusetts, in 1807. He lived there until he was about twenty-one years of age, then removed to Canaan, Vermont, and soon afterward to Wadsworth, Ohio, where he farmed and where he married. In the spring of 1837 he and his family went to Montville Township of Medina County, and he was a farmer in that locality until his death in 1885. He first espoused the whigs in politics and later the republicans, and in Medina County he filled the offices of township trustee and a member of the school board. When a young man in Vermont, in 1832-34, he served as a member of the State Militia. Lysander Frizzell married Harriet Robinson, who was born in County Down, Ireland, in 1815, and died in Medina County, Ohio, in May, 1878. Of their six children James R. was the youngest and the only survivor. The older children in order of birth were Theresa Jane, Mary Ellen, Harrison G., Henry G. and Sylvia.
James R. Frizzell had a good education in the rural schools of his native township, and also attended Oberlin College and old Berea College of Ohio. At the age of twenty he left school and became a practical farmer in Montville Township, but in the fall of 1885 came to Kansas, settling four miles west of Halstead. He still owned his farm there, comprising 400 acres. In May, 1895, he moved into the town of Halstead and was identified with the dairy business for some years, but since 1902 had lived retired. He owned a good home at the corner of Chestnut and Sixth streets. Mr. Frizzell is a member and trustee of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
In 1868, in Medina, Ohio, he married Miss Philena Turner, daughter of James and Marion (Fairchild) Turner. Her father was a pioneer farmer in Medina County. Mr. and Mrs. Frizzell have four children: Bertrand E., who is a member of the firm Frizzell & Smith, produce merchants at Halstead; Florence, wife of Charles A. Smith, of the above named firm; Beulah M., wife of Dr. W. C. Trowbridge, who lives at Goldendale, Washington; and Julia W., wife of Walter Lee, a teacher at Hiawatha, Kansas.