Location: Pittsburg Kansas

Biography of James Frederick O’Connor

James Frederick O’Connor. The stern competition and exacting conditions of twentieth century business progression have resulted in specialization in every line of industrial and constructive activity. Men of marked ability have proved beyond question of doubt, through consecutive action and comprehensive investigation, that the best and most productive results are secured by a consistent devotion to some particular line of effort. The reason for this is that, with so many competitors it is practically impossible for a single individual to become an expert in all lines. When he entered upon his career, James Frederick O’Connor recognized the fact that the man who dissipates his energies in all directions attains no definite goal, and during his life he has, therefore, practically confined himself to one line of business. His start was given him when he secured the privilege of using an old icehouse, deserted by its former owner, his father. That was a quarter of a century ago. Today, the O’Connor-Hamlin Ice and Cold Storage Company is one of Fort Scott’s foremost industries, alike a credit to the city in which it is located and a monument to the consistent fidelity of one who realized the benefit of specialization, through which he has worked out a splendid success. James Frederick O’Connor was born at Fort Scott, Kansas, November 3, 1868, a son of John and Adelia (Karleskind) O’Connor. His mother...

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Biography of Floyd E. Doubleday

Floyd E. Doubleday. It has been the fortune of Floyd E. Doubleday to realize many of his worthy ambitions, and through the exercise of good judgment and business ability to wrest from his opportunities financial and general success. For many years he has been interested in the coal industry, and at the present time is accounted one of the leading operators of Pittsburg. Mr. Doubleday was born at Italy, New York, June 23, 1859, and is a son of Guy L. and Caroline (Hobart) Doubleday. The Doubleday family is of English origin and traces its ancestry back in America to Colonial days, when the earliest ancestor came to Massachusetts. Elisha Doubleday, M. D., the grandfather of Floyd E. Doubleday, was born in 1800, near Binghampton, New York, practiced medicine and surgery all his life in the Empire State, and died at Italy, New York, in 1865. Guy L. Doubleday was born at Italy, in 1827, and as a young man selected the profession of his father for his life work. He secured his degree from the Geneva College of Physicians and Surgeons, and continued in practice throughout his life, dying in 1870, at Italy. He was one of the most prominent men of his community, was a leading democratic politician, and at the time of his death was serving as associate judge of Yates County, New York. He was...

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Biography of Henry R. Ransom

The Pittsburg Sash & Door Company. One of the very considerable industries of the City of Pittsburg is The Pittsburg Sash & Door Company, which like many successful concerns had a very modest heginning but is now contributing a great deal of wealth to the city and is furnishing support to many families whose members find employment there. This business was originally started as a bay press by L. N. Mosteller, now a retired business man of Pittsburg. In October, 1902, Henry R. Ransom arrived in Pittsburg and bought what was then known as the Pittsburg Planing Mill, situated at Fourth and Grand Avenue. Since then the business has been under the direction of the Ransom family, and during the past year its business has been so voluminous that its payroll amounts to $15,000. It has prospered and expanded continuously during the fifteen years since Henry R. Ransom took charge of the industry. The Ransoms were a colonial English family that settled first in Virginia. Later they lived in New York State. S. S. Ransom was born at Perrysburg, New York, and is still living now retired at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was reared and married in Perrysburg, New York, and was for many years a traveling salesman. S. S. Ransom married Jennie Strickland, who was born in Ellinsville, Warren County, Pennsylvania. Henry R. Ransom, head of The Pittsburg Sash...

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Biography of Charles S. Denison

Charles S. Denison. The ordinary, every-day man, engrossed in the business avocation which brings his daily bread, is representative of the nation’s citizenship. This is the normal type, and his life begins and ends, perhaps, with nothing more distinctive than is the ripple on the face of the stream when the pebble is thrown into the water. It is the unusual type that commands attention and it is his influence exerted on his community, and the record of his life, that is valuable and interesting as a matter of biography. In the professions, and especially in the law, the opportunities for usefulness and personal advancement depend almost entirely upon this unusually gifted individual, and here natural endowment is as essential as is thorough preparation. The bar of Crawford County is a representative body of Kansas and as such has its full quota of brilliant men, included among whom may be mentioned Charles S. Denison, why by inheritance, education, predilection and thorough training, is fitted to take his place among the leading members of his calling. Charles S. Denison, who has been practicing at the bar of Pittsburg since 1909, was born at the Osage Mission, Saint Paul, Kansas, August 28, 1878, and is of Scotch and German descent, the Denisons having come from Scotland to Pennsylvania prior to the Revolutionary war. His grandfather, David Denison, was born in the...

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Biography of Samuel Brownlee Fisher

Samuel Brownlee Fisher of Parsons, consulting engineer of the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad Company, is one of the eminent railway engineers of America. He had had nearly fifty years of active experience and had been identified with the construction of various railway lines in the West and East. He comes of an old Scotch family of Covenanter stock. On the maternal side his ancestors were the Brownlees, who were Covenanters in Scotland and were exiled because of their religious belief and settled in Pennsylvania. Mr. Fisher’s great-great-grandfather in the maternal line, George Wilie, was a soldier in the Revolutionary war, and another member of this same family was Colonel Thompson, an aide to General Washington. Mr. Fisher’s maternal grandfather, Samuel Brownlee, was born in Washington, Pennsylvania, in 1792, and spent all his life on a farm in that rugged district of Southwestern Pennsylvania, dying in 1855. He was an active abolitionist in the days before the Civil war and was a member of the Associate Branch of the Presbyterian Church. Samuel Brownlee married Ann Wilie, who was born and died at Washington, Pennsylvania. The father of Mr. Fisher was Rev. Jacob P. Fisher, who was born in Ohio in 1808, but was reared and married in Washington, Pennsylvania. He was a minister of that branch of Presbyterianism formerly known as the Associate Church. He was also actively identified...

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Biography of William Lanyon

William Lanyon. More than any other the name Lanyon is distinctive of the zinc industry in Southeastern Kansas, particularly at Pittsburg. The Lanyon family had been prominent in this particular industry for several generations. To a large degree the importance of Pittsburg as a zinc manufacturing center is due to the enterprise of the Lanyons who came to this part of Kansas more than thirty years ago from their original home in Southern Wisconsin, where they had operated extensive mining and manufacturing industries. Though he was one of the earliest of the family to take an active part in the zinc industry in Southeastern Kansas, Mr. William Lanyon gave up many of his interests in that field some years ago, and is now best known as a banker and leading citizen. He is vice president of the National Bank of Pittsburg and is now serving as mayor of the city. He was born at Mineral Point, Wisconsin, December 26, 1862. His father William Lanyon was a native of England, where he was born in 1830. Six years after his birth his parents came to the United States and finally settled in Mineral Point, Wisconsin. He grew up there, married, and was first engaged in the grain business. Coming to Pittsburg, Kansas, in 1882, he was a pioneer in the development of the coal fields and the operation of the...

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Biography of Harry Degen

Harry Degen, deceased, was for more than a decade actively identified with mercantile interests in Bartlesville as the proprietor of a department store which is still being conducted by his widow and which is one of the best establishments of the kind in the city. He was born in Austria on the 11th of November, 1875, and when a lad of twelve years accompanied his parents on their emigration to the United States. He worked for his relatives in Kansas until twenty-seven years of age, when in association with his uncle he established the firm of Degen & Company for the conduct of a clothing store in Pittsburg, Kansas. The year 1910 witnessed his arrival in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, where he established the Degen dry goods store on the corner of Third and Dewey streets, conducting the enterprise successfully to the time of his demise on April 16, 1921. His honorable business dealings and earnest desire to please his patrons won him the confidence and support of the public to such a degree that he enjoyed a large and profitable trade. Since his death the establishment has been conducted by his widow, who has placed a manager in charge thereof. Twenty-five people are employed in the store, which carries a stock valued at about fifty thousand dollars. Mr. Degen erected a modern business block 6n Third street, between Osage and...

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Biography of Seth J. Bailey

Seth J. Bailey. The gratifying success which had crowned the efforts of Seth J. Bailey, of Chanute, clearly and emphatically evidence the business skill, perseverance and enterprise of this individual, who had been engaged in business here since the fall of 1900. This is a utilitarian age, one in which advancement and progress come through activity in the industrial and commercial interests of life. There is nothing to which America owes her pre-eminence among the nations of the earth so much as to her inventions, and each year sees additions to the list which bear marked impress upon the world of trade. It is not as an inventor, but as a manufacturer of inventions that Mr. Bailey is known. He had the foresight to see the possibilities of a certain appliance and the courage to back his judgment, and the result had been the building up of one of Chanute’s prominent and substantial business concerns, the Sunshine Mantle Company, manufacturers of incandescent gas mantles. Mr. Bailey is a native son of Kansas, born in the City of Topeka, May 2, 1868, his parents being Dr. M. and Lanra A. (Jarboe) Bailey. The family is of English origin, and was founded in Pennsylvania prior to the War of the Revolution. William Bailey, the grandfather of Seth J. Bailey, was born in either Pennsylvania or Ohio; at least it is known...

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Biography of Miss Isa Allene Greene

Miss Isa Allene Greene grew up in Bourbon County, Kansas, and in that section taught her first school. Through her work she had become one of Kansas’ noted educators. She had proved herself a real teacher. She possesses the ability, rare as it is in any time or generation and rare even in these modern times when so much emphasis is placed upon it, of vitalizing and inspiring the intellectual activities of those under her charge, and all her work had been characterized by a depth of sympathy and understanding which is more necessary in any rational scheme of education than mere ability to impart knowledge. Miss Greene had taught for many years in Kansas and was recently promoted to the great responsibility of superintendent of the School for the Blind, Kansas City, Kansas. Miss Greene was born in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, at the Town of Smithfield December 29, 1866. She was next to the youngest in a family of ten children. Her parents, Harvey and Nancy (Jaco) Greene, were both natives of Pennsylvania. Her maternal grandfather was of English descent, while her paternal ancestors were Welsh and German. The grandparents came to America about 1800. James H. Greene was a cooper by trade, and also a local minister of the Methodist Church. He and his wife were married and lived continuously in one house in Pennsylvania until all...

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Biography of Paris Tilghman Ellis

Paris Tilghman Ellis, of Pittsburg, dealer in insurance, real estate, loans and rentals, is a native Kansan, and since entering business for himself had enjoyed a satisfactory success and at the same time had proved his worth and public spirit as a citizen. Mr. Ellis was born on a farm in Montgomery County, Kansas, June 17, 1878, a son of C. R. and Martha A. (Ferguson) Ellis. In early Colonial days three sailor brothers left England and immigrated to America, locating in the colony of Virginia. From there the family went across the mountains into Kentucky. Mr. Ellis’ grandfather, R. R. Ellis, was born in Kentucky in 1807, and later went as a pioneer into Crawford County, Indiana. There be cleared a farm from the wilderness, engaged in agricultural pursuits, and spent the rest of his life as a farmer. He was one of his community’s most highly respected citizens when he died in 1884 at Hardinsburg. C. R. Ellis was born in 1854, in Crawford County, Indiana, was educated there in the public schools and was reared on his father’s farm. Not long after his marriage he left his native community to seek the greater opportunities of the open West. Thus in 1875 he arrived in Montgomery County, Kansas, and was identified with the early settlement and development of that section. From farming he finally turned his attention...

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Biography of William Eugene Peddycord

William Eugene Peddycord. No individual in a community wields a greater influence in the molding and shaping of character than does the educator, and the capable, conscientious instructor often stands nearer to the hearts of the people than does their spiritual guide. On entering the schoolroom the child’s mind is as plastic clay and is as readily made to take shape in the skilled hands of the educator. It is for this reason that the individuals who have charge of the education of the children of a community should be chosen with the greatest care; their responsibilities are grave and important–their acquirements and characters should be beyond reproach. In the person of William Eugene Peddycord, the people of Elk Falls have a superintendent of schools who possesses the necessary qualifications for the proper instruction of the young. He is the possessor of an excellent education; and as a young man of exemplary habits his influence and example should prove beneficial to the youths placed in his charge. Mr. Peddycord was born at Wilsey, Morris County, Kansas, September 29, 1892, and is a son of L. M. and Mary (Schenck) Peddycord. He is of Scotch-Irish descent, and on the paternal side the family traces its ancestry back to colonial Pennsylvania. His grandfather, the Rev. Nathan T. Peddycord, was born in 1834, in Ohio, and the fact that he was a...

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Biography of Oris Polk Dellinger, Prof.

Prof. Oris Polk Dellinger. It must be conceded, and is a source of pride, that Kansas is wide awake and in earnest in the matter of providing the best of educational advantages for her youth. Great institutions have been founded and to their faculties have been called men of scholastic attainments and wide experience in the educational field. One of many departments of study offered by the Kansas State Manual Training Normal School at Pittsburg, an exceedingly interesting and important one is that of biology, which for the past seven years had been under the able direction of Prof. Oris Polk Dellinger, a scientific scholar well known in this specialty in a number of university cities. Oris P. Dellinger was born at Bicknell, in Knox County, Indiana, August 14, 1877. His parents are W. A. and Alice (Polk) Dellinger, retired residents of Bicknell. The paternal grandfather was born in 1827, in Germany. When he came to the United States he settled first in Virginia, but later removed to Indiana, and in 1890 came to Bucklin, Ford County, Kansas, where he died in 1907. W. A. Dellinger was born in Virginia in 1856. In boyhood he accompanied his parents to Clark County, Indiana, was reared there on his father’s farm and after marriage removed to Bicknell and carried on farming in this vicinity until he retired. He had been quite...

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Biography of William W. Graves

William W. Graves. It is as a publisher, author and editor that William W. Graves has made his mark in Kansas. Until he was about twenty-two years of age he had concerned himself with the business of getting an education, working in his father’s store at St. Paul, Kansas, and with teaching. Then came his decision to learn the printer’s trade. The publishers of the Pittsburg World expressed a willingness to “take him on” as an apprentice, allowing him to work as hard as he pleased, but he was to receive no wages at the first and was to board himself. He stuck to his resolutions, completed the contract, and then his name was entered upon the payroll. The Pittsburg World was a daily paper, but in 1893 it was moved from Pittsburg to Girard, Kansas, and Mr. Graves went along with it as local editor. The World suspended publication in 1895, and that was the first jolt Mr. Graves had sustained in his ambitions as a newspaper man. The first day of January, 1896, found him connected with the Neosho County Journal, a weekly published at St. Paul and owned by the Fitzsimmons Brothers. He had acquired a one-fourth interest, but in August of the same year he purchased the rest of the stock and has since been the paper’s editor and owner. On becoming chief of the...

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Biography of James H. Price

James H. Price. The large interests which have engrossed the time and energies of James H. Price have brought him to the very forefront among the business men of Crawford County, and particularly of that part lying adjacent to the City of Pittsburg, with which city he has been prominently identified for the past ten or more years. From the very start of his career, he has been interested, in one or another way, with the mining industry, and today he is known throughout Kansas as an extensive coal operator and contractor. Mr. Price was born in Herefordshire, England, April 9, 1865, and is a son of Thomas and Louise (Lovett) Price, natives of the same place. His father was born in 1838 and was reared on a farm, his education being received in the rural schools of his locality. He was married in his native land and there engaged in farming on his own account, but was not satisfied with the success which attended his efforts and therefore determined to seek his fortunes in America, to which country he came in 1873. He first settled at Brazil, Indiana, where for some time he worked in the coal mines, but later resumed his earlier occupation of farming, and subsequently moved to Montserrat, Johnson County, Missouri, where he purchased a farm. During the remainder of his life he devoted himself...

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Biography of Homer Clare Lemon

Homer Clare Lemon. Among the prosperous business enterprises of Pittsburg, Kansas, is the Nuttman-Lemon Lumber Company, the organizer and president of which is Homer Clare Lemon, a man of large experience in the lumber industry, and a man of great energy, public spirit and civic zeal. Mr. Lemon was born October 17, 1869, at Cromwell, Iowa. His parents were William Vance and Susan (Carter) Lemon. The Lemon ancestry is traced to the north of Ireland. Five brothers of the name came to the American colonies and all served in the Revolutionary war from Pennsylvania. One of these patriots was John Lemon, the great-grandfather of Homer C. Lemon, of Pittsburg, Kansas, and the father of John McClannahan Lemon, who was born in Pennsylvania in 1791. He came by way of Kentucky, in pioneer days, to La Porte, Indiana, in which neighborhood he built the old Lemon toll bridge which still spans the stream and preserves his name. He was appointed tollkeeper and while he followed farming as an occupation, he served in important public offices, for four years was receiver in the Indiana Land office and was frequently honored by the democratic party. He had served in the War of 1812. His wife, Jean (McConnell) Lemon, was born in Kentucky in 1789, the first white child born in Woodford County. She died in the old home at the Lemon Toll...

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