Location: Eureka Kansas

Biography of John H. Smythe

John H. Smythe. The life of John Henry Smythe, who for many years had served as city clerk of Eureka, had been one that exemplifies the true spirit and practice of service. He had always been a worker. He had performed faithfully those duties that have come to him in a long career, whether as a soldier on the battlefield, as an employe of business concerns, or as a public official. While he had attained none of the conspicuous places in business or public life, there is much that is honorable, instructive and praiseworthy in what he had done, and he deserves all the fine esteem paid him by his many loyal friends in Greenwood County, where he had lived for about thirty-seven years. Mr. Smythe was born at Nittany Hall in Center County, Pennsylvania, July 4, 1836, and had already passed the age of fourscore. His grandfather was a very prominent man of Pennsylvania. His name was William Smythe and he was born in County Down, Ireland, in 1770. When seventeen years of age he came to America, arriving in the same year that the Constitution of the United States was formulated and before the union of the colonies had become really effective. He located in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, and subsequently removed to Center County. He attained a place of influence in the latter county, and was a...

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Biography of Sylvester Freemont Wicker

Sylvester Freemont Wicker. In point of experience and continuous practice Mr. Wicker is one of the oldest members of the bar in Greenwood County. He had been identified with a general practice as a lawyer and many business affairs in that section for the past thirty-three years. He now had his home and interests at Eureka. The stock from which he is descended is Scotch-Irish. The Wickers settled in North Carolina during colonial times. Mr. Wicker’s father and grandfather were natives of the Old North state. His grandfather James Wicker was born in North Carolina in 1807, and was an early settler in the State of Indiana. He died at Westfield in that state in 1877. He married a Miss Bundrum, a native of North Carolina, who also died at Westfield, Indiana. Sylvester Freemont Wicker was born in Hamilton County, Indiana, February 28, 1852. His father, Harmon A. Wicker, who was born in North Carolina in 1826 grew up there, but when a young man removed to Hamilton County, Indiana, where he married. The trade which he followed during most of the years of his life was that of blacksmith. He came to Kansas during the territorial epoch. It was in the spring of 1857 that he settled at Ossawatomie, and he shod horses and did repairs for the settlers in that community until the outbreak of the war....

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Biography of Edwin Tucker

Edwin Tucker. Of pioneer Kansans and of men who made the state what it is today Greenwood County contributed no character of wider influence and of finer personality than the late Edwin Tucker. He was one of the very first pioneer settlers in the county, one of the builders of Eureka, achieved a splendid success in business affairs as a land owner and cattleman, participated in the public life of his home county and state at large, and many of the interests which he established and maintained are now being continued through his worthy son. The late Edwin Tucker was born at West Newbury, Vermont, in 1837. He died on the old farm adjoining Eureka on the south in 1911. The Tuckers came out of England, three brothers of them, and were settlers in Vermont before the Revolutionary war. Edwin Tucker’s father was David Tucker, who was born in Vermont in 1794. He moved West and became identified with the lumber industry in Wisconsin. He suffered injuries in the lumber camp which made him almost an invalid during his later years. In 1857 he came to Kansas, but lived practically retired until his death in 1869. He died on the old farm at Eureka. Reared and educated in Vermont, though finishing his schooling in Wisconsin, Edwin Tucker was twenty years of age when he arrived in Greenwood County in...

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Biography of David C. Johnson

David C. Johnson in his business career had been identified with the City of Eureka and had been a factor in affairs there for over a quarter of a century. He is one of the expert men in that field in real estate and related lines of business and is manager of the Eureka Mortgage Company. Mr. Johnson had lived in Kansas since early boyhood. He was born at Effingham, Illinois, February 20, 1860. The Johnson family became identified with Illinois when it was a territory and in fact when that place was marked off as a distinct section of Northwest Territory under the name County of Illinois. His paternal ancestors came out of England and were colonial settlers in Virginia. Mr. Johnson’s grandfather, Arthur L. Johnson, was born in Illinois in 1801. He grew up in that state, became a minister of the Methodist Church and was a contemporary of such evangelists and missionaries as Peter Cartwright. For many years he lived retired from the arduous work of his profession and died at Effingham, Illinois, in 1880. He married Miss Gammon, who was also a native of Illinois and died at Effingham. David W. Johnson, father of David C., was born in Illinois in 1824. He grew up and married in his native state and became a physician by profession, though he afterwards exchanged the work of that...

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Biography of Bernhard Teichgraeber

Bernhard Teichgraeber is now sole proprietor of the City Mill and Elevator Company at Emporia. Any institution whose wheels have been turning and whose machinery had been grinding out a useful product for daily consumption during a period of thirty years or more had more than ordinary interest and associations. This is particularly true of the City Mill and Elevator Company of Emporia, which was established prior to 1886 by Doctor Armour, and is one of the landmarks of the city. Its present owner is a practical miller, a profession which had run in the family for several generations, and he had been a resident of Kansas more or less continuously for about thirty years. He is of German origin and birth, born in Saxony, Germany, June 12, 1861. His father, William August Teichgraeber, who was also a miller, was born in Saxony in 1820 and died there in 1878. He was a member of the Lutheran Church. The maiden name of the mother was Antonia Fisher, who was born in Saxony in 1832 and died there in 1873. Their children all came to America, and a brief record of them is as follows: Theodore, a miller, died at Lindsborg, Kansas, at the age of fifty-six; Wilhelmina, wife of William Unger, a retired resident at Salina, Kansas; Bertha, wife of Herman Winkler, a farmer at California, Missouri; Richard, in...

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Biography of Robert Focht

Robert Focht, a sterling newspaper man of Kansas, is editor and proprietor of the Democratic Messenger, the only democratic paper published in Greenwood County. Mr. Focht had been a resident of Kansas since boyhood, and his family were pioneers of Greenwood County, and the different members have borne more than their individual share in its development and destiny. As the name indicates, the family is of German origin. The first American was George Focht. When a youth he left Germany and made the passage to America on a sailing vessel, arriving in the colonies when the Revolutionary war was still in progress. It was a familiar practice of those days that immigrants who had no money to pay their passage would bind themselves out to some business man on this side of the Atlantic for a period of service to pay the passage money. The employer of George Focht was a merchant in New York City. The young German lad was indentured to that merchant for a period of five years. Instead of being set to work in a store, he was sent into the army as a substitute and fought through the last three years of the Revolution in Washington’s army. By virtue of that service his descendants, including Robert Focht, are eligible to membership in the Sons and Daughters of the Amercan Revolution. After the war he...

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Biography of Arthur W. Evans, M. D.

Arthur W. Evans, M. D., is a native of the Sunflower State, a scion of a pioneer family of this commonwealth and has here achieved definite success in his profession, as one of the representative physicians and surgeons engaged in practice in the City of Independence. Dr. Arthur Whiting Evans was born at Lawrence, Kansas, on the 26th of October, 1870, and is a son of Arthur and Mary (Leishum) Evans, the former of whom was born in Lancastershire, England, in 1841, and the latter of whom was born in Wales, in the same year, she having been a young girl when her parents immigrated to America and established their home at Baltimore, Maryland, her marriage having been solemnized in the City of Cincinnati, Ohio. Arthur Evans was a resident of Eureka, Kansas, at the time of his death, which occurred in a hospital at Kansas City, Missouri, in January, 1905, he having gone to that city for medical and surgical treatment. His widow still maintains her home at Eureka. Arthur Evans was a boy when he accompanied his parents from England to the United States and after remaining for a time in New York City the parents established their home at Cincinnati, Ohio, where the son was reared to adult age and acquired his early education. There he learned the trade of tinsmith and also became familiar with...

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Biography of Robert E. Kenner

Robert E. Kenner. No better lesson relative to the value of honorable effort intelligently directed can be found than that offered by the career of a man who has risen to a responsible position through his own initiative, and in this connection the life of Robert E. Kenner presents an example. Still a young man, he has worked his way to an important post, that of superintendent of the American Zinc, Lead and Smelter Company, at Dearing, Kansas, and in so doing has been dependent only upon his own resource and industry. Mr. Kenner was born at Eureka, Kansas, August 5, 1883, and is a son of J. W. Kenner and Cora Frances (Cogswell) Kenner, the mother a member of the old Colonial Cogswell family of New England. The Kenners originated in England and at an early day were to be found in Illinois, in which state, in 1815, James Kenner, the grandfather of Robert E. Kenner, was born. He became a pioneer in Kansas of the early ’60s, settling on Batchelor Creek, as a homesteader of 160 acres of land. There he passed the remaining years of his active life in agricultural pursuits; and died in 1900, at Eureka. During the Civil war be fought as a soldier of the Union, and assisted in repelling the forces of Price when the Confederates were engaged in their memorable raid....

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