Biography of Mrs. Gladys Evarts Hill
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Mrs. Gladys Evarts Hill. Perhaps no more appropriate selection could have been made by the Department of Kansas Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic than their choice of Gladys Evarts Hill as patriotic instructor. Mrs. Hill through parentage and far reaching ancestry represents the true idea of patriotism, a patriotism not alone of words and expediency but of deeds and heroism.
Gladys Evarts Hill was born at Clyde, Cloud County, Kansas, and is a daughter of Daniel Sapp and Elizabeth Jane (Evarts) Lusadder, and a granddaughter of Isaac and Susanne (Musick) Lusadder, or, as the name was then given its French orthography, Leuzadde. The Leuzadde family belonged to the French Huguenots who fled from religious persecution to America and settled in the parish of Natchitoches, Louisiana. This early ancestor of Mrs. Hill married a Spanish lady.
To Virginia, in Colonial days, came one George Musick, who, at death, was survived by five sons. Ephraim, the fourth son, resided in Albermarle County, his plantation being in sight of Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. At death he also was survived by five sons, and one of these, John Musick, served in a Virginia regiment in the Revolutionary war. At death he left a daughter, Susanne, who then went to make her home with her uncle, Reuben Musick, at St. Louis, Missouri. In the meanwhile young Isaac Leuzadde was growing to manhood in Louisiana. The craft plying on the Mississippi, swiftly flowing by his father’s plantation, gave him opportunity to seek adventure farther north, and this he found at first as a soldier serving in the Black Hawk war. Following that service he went to St. Louis, where it was his good fortune to become acquainted with Susanne Musick, and in that city they were married on February 11, 1836. Shortly afterward they moved to Carroll County, Missouri, and there on April 4, 1841, their son Daniel Sapp was born. He was an infant when removal was made to Platte County, Missouri, and there his young mother died in 1846. The father continued to reside at Iatan, in Platte County, until 1855, moving then to Nemaha County, Kansas, and in the following year to Atchison County, Kansas, and across the river, just opposite Iatan, the grandfather of Mrs. Hill operated a wood yard and supplied fuel for the river steamboats.
Daniel Sapp Lusadder’s boyhood was mainly spent in connection with activities along the river, but when he grew older he sought other opportunities and finally accepted a position with the firm of Majors and Russell, who carried on a freighting business on the Santa Fe and Oregon trails. He was brave and adventurous and had many thrilling experiences. In the summer of 1860 he took his last oxen train over the trail to Julesburg, Colorado, and in 1861 took his last mule train to Fort Laramie, Wyoming. His employers conducted their business under the name of the Government Transportation Company of Majors, Russell & Company, and before the expiration of his contract with this company Civil war was declared. Without taking time to return home, the young man turned into what he believed the path of duty and on November 23, 1861, was enrolled at Leavenworth, Kansas, as a private in Company D, Second Regiment of Kansas Volunteer Cavalry. Doubtless it was on account of his known courage and his experience as a freighter that he was detailed as a scout and messenger, and during his many expeditions in this dangerous branch of the service he had nine horses shot from under him and was wounded by an enemy’s gun near Keatsville, Arkansas, August 20, 1863. He participated in the following battles: Cross Hollows, Arkansas, October 18, 1862; Fort Wayne, Cherokee Nation, October 22, 1862; Cove Creek, Arkansas, November 8, 1862; Cane Hill, Arkansas, November 28, 1862; Reed’s Hill, Arkansas, December 6, 1862; Prairie Grove, Arkansas, December 7, 1862; Van Buren, Arkansas, December 28, 1862; Fayettsville, Arkansas, August 24, 1863; Roseville, Arkansas, April 4, 1864. When he received his honorable discharge from the United States service, at Leavenworth, Kansas, January 14, 1865, he was then but twenty-four years of age. He had emerged from all these experiences with honor untarnished and health practically unimpaired, but he felt that his education had been, to some degree, neglected and therefore during the period included between 1865 and December, 1867, he pursued a course of study at Highland University, in the meanwhile also locating a home site at Clyde, Cloud County, Kansas.
It was in the fall of 1865, while at Kennekuk, Atchison County, Kansas, that he became acquainted with Miss Elizabeth Jane Evarts, who was a native of Ohio and at that time was making a pleasure trip on horseback from Atchison to Beatrice, Nebraska. Acquaintance ripened into affection and at Waterford, Knox County, Ohio, on December 13, 1867, they were united in marriage. During Daniel Lusadder’s absence in Ohio, his father remained on the home site at Clyde and was there to welcome his children when they drove to the opening of the dugout on the home ground (making the trip from Atchison in a buggy) on April 2, 1868. Until the dugout was made comfortable the family lived in a covered wagon, like many other pioneers, but their two children were born in the dugout, Grant, born December 28, 1868; and Gladys, born September 29, 1870. Grant died in 1902.
In the spring of 1869 the parents of Mrs. Lusadder, William Henry and Nancy (Allison) Evarts, came to Kansas and for a short time the family all lived under one roof. In the winter of 1872 Isaac Lusadder died at Clyde, an old man. In 1885 Mr. Evarts died, and in 1899 Mrs. Evarts also passed away, and their burial was at Clyde.
During the eighteen years that Daniel Lusadder and wife lived on their homestead at Clyde they experienced the ups and downs that usually attend pioneering. For many years Mr. Lusadder prospered in the well drilling business, supplying a constant demand and providing a necessity of life. Along with some misfortune, good fortune also came to the family. The Government paid Mr. Lusadder for his horses lost during the Civil war and they were inheritors of a large fortune from Reuben Musick, before mentioned, who in 1861 was counted the richest man in St. Louis County, Missouri. When the Kansas Wesleyan University was located in 1886 at Salina, Mr. and Mrs. Lusadder decided to leave their old home and wide circle of friends at Clyde and remove to Salina in order to give their children the benefit of higher educational privileges. In the latter place, as in the former, they won respect and esteem. Before leaving Clyde, however, they celebrated the anniversary of their wedding, their crystal anniversary, to which some 300 friends were invited. It was an occasion long to be remembered. The commodious stone dwelling was hospitably thrown open, lighted from cupola to to basement, and entertainment very unusual and elaborate for this section was lavishly provided. Mr. Lusadder began to be more and more troubled as he grew older by the wound he had received while in the Civil war and finally decided to go to Washington City for expert surgical treatment. Perhaps he had delayed too long, for he was not benefited, and his death took place in the Government Hospital, Washington, June 28, 1911. Under the mound numbered 17926 in Arlington National Cemetery rest his ashes. Mrs. Lusadder resided with her daughter Mrs. Hill at Salina. She, like her husband, had been active in the Methodist Episcopal Church, is a member of the Foreign Missionary Society and of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union.
After attending the public schools at Clyde, Gladys Lusadder and her brother both enjoyed advantages at Salina. She taught school before she was old enough to lawfully secure a certificate. In June, 1889, she received her diploma after completing a course in the Kansas Wesleyan University. On March 15, 1906, she was united in marriage with David Hill, a son of John and Agnes (Cooper) Hill, of Abilene, Kansas. She resided for fifteen years in the East and then returned to Kansas, during which period she was an extensive traveler, having visited every state in the Union except Maine and Florida, and additionally Mexico, Canada and Alaska.
Mr. Hill was associated with his father in the plumbing business at Abilene, Kansas, for twenty years and for twelve years had been a prominent and successful business man at Salina. He was for eleven years vice president of the Salina Plumbing Company, and at the present time is proprietor of the Right Way Plumbing Company. Mr. and Mrs. Hill reside at 544 South Ninth Street in Salina.
Mrs. Hill and her mother enjoy membership in many exclusive organizations. They are directly descended from such American patriots as John Evarts, Joel Bigelow, Deacon Samuel Chapin and the Warrens. Furthermore, they can trace ancestry back to the Saxon incursion into England, A. D. 495; through Charlemagne to the royal households of France, England, Germany and Italy. They are also directly descended from John Alden, who is credited with being the first individual to step ashore from the Mayflower. Mrs. Hill is a member of the Kansas Society of Mayflower Descendants; Daughters of Founders and Patriots of America; Daughters of the American Revolution; United States Daughters of 1812; and National Association of Patriotic Instructors. She was secretary of the Woman’s Kansas Day Club in 1915, during the term of office of Mrs. W. A. Johnston as president. She is a proud member of the Native Daughters of Kansas and a life member of the Kansas State Historical Society.