Location: Platte County KS

Biography of John Child Maxson, M. D.

John Child Maxson, M. D. For over twenty-four years Doctor Maxson had practiced his profession in Kansas and is now located at Corning, where as a physician and surgeon of thorough attainments he had an extensive practice. His family were early settlers in Sonthern and Southeastern Kansas. Doctor Maxson is in the tenth generation from the immigrant of the family from England to the American colonies. The founder of the Maxson family in this country was Richard Maxson. Doctor Maxson’s grandfather, James Maxson, spent his life as a farmer in Alleghany County, New York. James S. Maxson, father of Doctor Maxson, was born in Alleghany County, New York, in 1823. He grew up there, and when a young man went to Wisconsin, where he married. For some years he taught school both in Kentucky and Wisconsin. In the fall of 1873 he moved to Lyon County, Kansas, and was one of the early settlers there. By trade he was a painter, and he combined that occupation with farming until 1880, when he removed to Coffey County for three years and then for ten years lived at Parsons in Labette County and finally located at Erie in Neosho County. Late in life he retired to Kelly, Kansas, and died there in 1905, Twice during the Civil war he tried to get enrolled in the Union army, but was rejected on...

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Biography of Horace G. Lyons

Horace G. Lyons. One of the most interesting personalities surviving the pioneer decade of Kansas is Horace G. Lyons, who for four years had had his home in the Highland Park suburb of Topeka. Mr. Lyons is now eighty-four years of age. His had been not only a long but a broad outlook upon life. The experiences, the adventures, the hardships and the constructive enterprise of the early settlers were all his. The fruits of his life have been more than the material. Many persons who are not acquainted with his personal history know the depths of his philosophic thought and the written expression of the truth ingrained in his experience and his thoughtful consideration of the various phases of mortal life. To begin at the beginning, he was born at Great Bend in Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, August 2, 1832. He was reared to manhood on a farm. As a youth he had the advantages of the district schools and the select schools of his state. His parents were Daniel and Anna B. (Smith) Lyons, the former a native of Massachusetts and the latter of Connecticut. They represented some of the starling qualities of the old New. England. Daniel’s father was David Lyons. He was one of those who disguised as Indians boarded a British vessel in Boston harbor and threw overboard the boxes of stamped tea–in other words,...

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Biography of James H. Campbell

James H. Campbell. Prominent among the men identified with the financial and business interests of Iola, Kansas, is found James H. Campbell, cashier of the Iola State Bank and an official in various other enterprises. Mr. Campbell had been a resident of this section all his life and here had worked his own way to an edifying and well-deserved success, unaided save by inherent business acumen and persevering labor. He was born on a farm twelve miles northeast of Iola, in Anderson County, Kansas, January 31, 1874, and is a son of James H. and Bethia A. (Simpson) Campbell. James H. Campbell, the elder, was born in 1818, at Vevay, Switzerland County, Indiana, and was there educated and reared to manhood. He was trained for the law, which he took up as a profession when twenty-one years of age, and followed that calling in his native community until 1859, when he came to Kansas as a pioneer of Allen County. Here he homesteaded a claim of 160 acres, which he subsequently traded for another property, just over the line into Anderson County, and that tract continued to be his home until 1886, when he went to Colony, Kansas, and retired. After two years he came to Iola, and here made his home until his death, which occurred January 15, 1889. Mr. Campbell was one of the substantial men of...

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Biography of Isaac E., Lambert, Sr.

Isaac E. Lambert, Sr., whose tragic death in the burning of the Copeland Hotel at Topeka in 1908 is generally recalled, was in his time one of the most prominent attorneys of Kansas and stood in the forefront of his profession and also as a public leader. His son, Isaac E. Lambert, Jr., is also a lawyer, a resident of Emporia, and is now serving as chief clerk of the Kansas House of Representatives. At the time of his death Isaac E. Lambert, Sr., was fifty-five years of age and in the prime of his powers. He was born in Knoxville, Illinois, in 1853, spent his early youth there, and graduated LL. B. from the Northwestern University Law School at Chicago. He began practice in Peoria, Illinois, where for a time he was in the office of the noted Robert Ingersoll. Coming to Kansas in 1875 he located in Emporia and soon had acquired a reputation and successful general practice. He was especially noted as a criminal lawyer, though for many years his practice was corporation work. The Santa Fe Railroad Company employed him as its attorney with jurisdiction over twenty-two counties from Lyon County to the western limits of the state. He was also attorney for the National Hereford Association and for a number of other associations and corporations. He served at one time as United States district...

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Biography of William Henry Bond

William Henry Bond came up the Missouri River in 1865 to the City of Leavenworth and founded the wholesale grocery establishment of Bond & Funk. Though now living retired with home in Kansas City, Missouri, Mr. Bond had been more or less vitally and closely identified with Leavenworth’s welfare and progress for half a century. He was born in the State of Missouri at Weston on July 19, 1840. His parents, William H. and Mary (Hitchcock) Bond, arrived in Missouri when it was on the western frontier. His father was a miner by occupation. Mr. Bond is a direct descendant of Joseph Bond who came from England in 1721 and settled in Pennsylvania. He was a Quaker. Part of Mr. Bond’s youth was spent in New Orleans but for the most part he was reared in St. Louis, where he received his early education. At St. Louis on April 21, 1862, he married Miss Josephine Fisher. It was three years after his marriage that he became a resident of Leavenworth. He continued in business as a wholesale grocery merchant for nine years, and after that had many diverse business interests and was also closely connected with the community’s affairs. He was a pronounced republican in politics and was allied with the organization from the time of the Civil war. In 1872 he was elected a member of the Kansas...

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Biography of F. A. Cassady

F. A. Cassady is one of the most successful business men of his age in the State of Kansas. He is proprietor of one of the largest general stores at Neosho Rapids and is also vice president of the Neosho Rapids State Bank. He had reached this position in business circles before attaining his twenty-second year. He was born in Graysville, Missouri, September 24, 1894. His grandfather was a native of County Londonderry, Ireland, and in the old country spelled his name William O’Cassady but dropped the first syllable when he came to the United States. He lived a time in New Jersey and from there brought his family to Missouri, where he spent his active career in Graysville. W. O. Cassady, father of the Neosho Rapids merchant, was born in Missouri in 1861, and for a number of years lived at Graysville and had been an active merchant for the past thirty-four years, his business interests having taken him to a number of different points. In 1900 he moved to Glencoe, Oklahoma, in 1903 to Severy, Kansas, in 1904 to Latham, Kansas, in 1905 to Exline, Iowa, in 1906 to Unionville, Missouri, in 1907 to Harvard, Iowa, in 1909 to Jasper, Missouri, in 1910 to Lindsborg, Kansas, and shortly afterwards to Hartford, Kansas, where he now resided. He had an interest in the store at Neosho Rapids and...

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Biography of Theodore F. Ismert

Theodore F. Ismert, president of the Ismert-Hincke Milling Company of Kansas City, Kansas, is a director and controlling factor in the great milling industries of the Missouri Valley. He and his family have been prominently identified with flour milling in this and other states of the Middle West for over half a century. The Ismerts are of French lineage. Theodore F. Ismert was born at his father’s home in Lebanon, Illinois, February 10, 1866, the oldest of five children. Only two are now living, his sister being Mrs. Hincke. Their parents were John and Amelia (Berrard) Ismert, both natives of France. It was to take advantage of the glorious opportunities held out in America at the time that John Ismert came to the United States at the age of fifteen. Some of his uncles were then located near Buffalo, New York, and were identified with the milling industry there. John Ismert came over in a sailing vessel. Miss Berrard came about the same time with one of her brothers. They lived in the French settlement around Buffalo. At the age of seventeen in 1858 John Ismert made the long and dangerous journey to California by way of the Isthmus of Panama. He joined actively in the adventurous life of the far West, prospected seven years, had varied fortunes and misfortunes, and afterwards he always considered that he was lucky...

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Biography of Wilbur Austin Lawton

Wilbur Austin Lawton. When Mr. Lawton came to Lyon County more than thirty years ago he found the district around what is now the flourishing little City of Americus a raw and almost unbroken prairie. He was one of the men who undertook to convert the former cattle range into a fertile farming district, and he had contributed to this development to the extent of several hundred acres at least. At the same time he had been an important factor in local affairs, had been a banker, active in local politics, and for a number of years had been postmaster at Americus. He is an Eastern man, and when he came West he had a liberal education and was thoroughly trained to meet the exigencies of Western conditions. He was born in Skaneateles, Onondaga County, New York, February 7, 1857, grew up on a farm, attended a country school two miles south of his birthplace, afterwards Quaker Seminary at Union Springs, New York, and until 1876 was a student in the Academy at Skaneateles. It was in 1880 that he came West, and after one year as shipping clerk in a transfer implement house at Kansas City, Missouri, made a trip to Mexico and Western Texas, and then to Colorado Springs, Colorado, in which locality for three years he was in charge of a large sheep ranch. Coming to...

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Biography of John F. Richards

John F. Richards, born October 23, 1834, in Bath County, Virginia, the founder of the wholesale hardware house Richards & Conover Hardware Company of Kansas City, Missouri, and now residing at 200 Forty-fourth Street in that city, is not only one of the merchants who have risen to prominence in this section of the Middle West, but had a career connected by many experiences and activities with the Territory and State of Kansas. His parents were Walter and Nancy (Mayse) Richards, both natives of Virginia. Their old farm, Cloverdale, was situated on one of the stage lines which then crossed and recrossed the country before the railroad era, and this farm was also near a stage station where horses were changed. Mr. Richards’ maternal grandfather, Joseph Mayse, was a soldier in both the Revolutionary and Indian wars, and at one time was wounded in a battle with the Indians. Twenty years later his leg was amputated. The daughters of Walter and Nancy Richards were: Elizabeth Ann, who married William Saunders, at New Franklin, Missouri; Louisa, who became Mrs. Henry C. Miller of Arrow Rock, Missouri; Maria, who married Wesley Wickersham, who served in Colonel Hardin’s Illinois Regiment in the Mexican war; Mary Matilda, Mrs. Dr. A. F. Barnes of St. Louis, Missouri; the sons were William C., George Blackwell Shelton; Thomas and John Francisco Richards. In 1836 Walter Richards...

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Biography of Oscar Eugene Learnard, Col.

Col. Oscar Eugene Learnard was born in Fairfax, Vermont, November 14, 1832, the son of Stephen Tracy Learnard, and he died in Lawrence, Kansas, November 5, 1911. He grew to manhood in his native state, attended the common schools and Bakersfield Academy, taught school, and attended Norwich, Vermont, University. He did not finish his course at the University but that institution afterward conferred a Master’s degree upon him. Ill health compelled him to give up his studies, and he went to Tennessee, where he was for a time collector for a commercial house. After regaining his health he returned to the north and entered Albany Law School, where he was graduated. He began the practice of his profession at Crestline, Ohio, but he became imbued with the Free State idea, and in the winter of 1855-56 traveled on horseback to Kansas Territory to help make that a free state. He first went to Lawrence, but soon afterward left there and founded the Town of Burlington, and there took up the active practice of the law. He was elected district judge, and while holding that office resigned to accept an appointment as lieutenant colonel of the First Kansas Volunteer Infantry. He was the youngest district judge of the state, and one of the youngest army officers. Because of dissatisfaction with the restrictions placed upon him in the army, he resigned...

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Biography of Elizabeth Tantum Spencer

Elizabeth Tantum Spencer was born near Jerseyville, Illinois, September 28, 1871. She attended the rural schools in Jersey County, Illinois, and Woodson County, Kansas, was graduated from the Yates Center High School (a member of the first class) in 1890, and from the Kansas State Normal at Emporia in 1894. She taught three years in the rural schools of Woodson County, during the first year riding fourteen miles each day. Since that time she had taught in the schools of Yates Center, Kansas City, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri. In 1912 she became deputy county treasurer of Woodson County under her brother, H. Scott Spencer, county treasurer, where she served until 1915, when she entered upon her duties as county superintendent of schools. In 1916 she was re-elected. Under her supervision are the schools of Neosho Falls, Vernon and Toronto, the Rural High School and sixty-four rural schools. In these various school districts are eighty-seven teachers and 2,200 pupils. Miss Spencer is a democrat, a member of the Presbyterian Church and superintendent of the primary department of its Sabbath school in Yates Center. She holds membership in the Kansas State and the Southeast Kansas Teachers’ associations and in the National Association of Superintendents. Ferdinand Hayward Spencer, father of Elizabeth Spencer, was born May 22, 1838, in Monmouth County, New Jersey. He moved with his parents to Jersey County, Illinois,...

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Biography of G. Leroy Ramsey

G. Leroy Ramsey. Among the men who are marking their names indelibly upon the stockraising history of Southeastern Kansas, one who had been more than ordinarily active in this field of endeavor and whose operations have assumed large proportions is G. LeRoy Ramsey, who owned and operates 1,760 acres six miles north of El Dorado and 560 acres northeast of that city, all in Butler County. Mr. Ramsey not only raises and ships cattle extensively, but of recent years had been interested in oil leases. He was born at Belle Center, Ohio, December 22, 1872, and is a son of A. C. and Margaret (Clark) Ramsey. A. C. Ramsey, formerly one of the extensive cattlemen of Butler County, now retired from that business, and a large land owner of this section, had had an unusual and interesting career. He is a native of Ohio and was born in Coshocton County June 7, 1837, of Scotch-Irish descent, his parents being natives of the North of Ireland. A. C. Ramsey was one of a large family of children, and, as his parents were in modest financial circumstances, his chances for an education were limited. When he was still a lad his father died and his mother removed with the family from Coshocton County to Guernsey County, Ohio, where for one year A. C. Ramsey was employed by a fur trader. His...

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Biography of Charles Hedinger, M. D.

Charles Hedinger, M. D., of Canton, McPherson County, is a character unique in the great Sunflower State of Kansas. Others have grown old under the bright skies and in the wholesome and invigorating climate of Kansas’ prairies, but so far as known none had reached the age of ninety-five still active in work and had passed through such a varied range of experience, meeting hazard and danger with equanimity, and getting all possible out of life at every hour of existence. Much had been said and written in recent years concerning the decadence of the modern man and his comparative usefulness in the scheme of industrial and commercial life after the age of forty. In spite of the numerous conspicuous exceptions that belief had become almost a creed in some sections. But Doctor Hedinger had carried on his life work and usefulness for almost half a century beyond the normal middle age. He had actually proved that the last of life is that for which the first was made. Much had been written of Doctor Hedinger in recent years, and one of America’s leading weekly periodicals, the Outlook, recently referred to him in the following paragraphs: “Out in Kansas today Dr. Charles Hedinger, at the age of ninety-five, performs all of the arduous duties of a country practice, turning out at midnight to drive a score of miles, though...

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Biography of O. F. Walke

O. F. Walke who has spent most of his life in Kansas has developed a very substantial business career, and for several years has been proprietor of the Independent Laundry, one of the best equipped establishments of its kind in the southern section of the state. He is of Scotch-Irish ancestry, and his great-grandfather came from the North of Ireland, and was an early farmer in Ohio. Mr. Walke’s grandfather, William Walke, was born in Ohio in 1840, came to Kansas about a quarter of a century ago, and was an active farmer until he retired and died at Columbus, Kansas, in 1912. He made a record as a soldier during the Civil war, enlisting in an Ohio regiment of infantry in 1862 and serving until the close of hostilities. He was a member of the Christian Church, and was a stanch republican of the old school. He was also affiliated with the Modern Woodmen of America. His wife, Caroline Walke, was born in Ohio in 1843 and died in Columbus, Kansas, in 1911. Mr. O. F. Walks was born at Woodstock, Champaign County, Ohio, April 2, 1888. His father is W. H. Walke, who was born in Ohio in 1856. He was reared in Ohio, where he married Miss Rella McDougal, who was born in that state in 1862. They have two sons: O. F. and D. E.,...

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Biography of Joseph Henry Hoopingarner

Joseph Henry Hoopingarner has for twenty-five years been identified with the Methodist Conference in Kansas, though he has not spent all of that time in the active ministry. He is a large property owner and is now pastor of the leading church at Baxter Springs. He comes of a very interesting family of pioneers in Southeastern Kansas. Rev. Mr. Hoopingarner himself was born in Crawford County, Kansas, April 3, 1871, only a few years after the real settlement of that region began. His ancestry goes back to Wuertemberg, Germany, where his great-grandfather Coonrad Hoopingarner was born. Coonrad and a brother came to America, and while the brother settled in Ohio, Coonrad located in Indians, near Terre Hante. John Hoopingarner, grandfather of Rev. Mr. Hoopingarner, was born in Indiana, spent his life as a farmer in that state, and died near Terre Haute. James Patterson Hoopingarner was the pioneer in Southeastern Kansas. He was born near Terre Haute, Indiana, August 31, 1826, was reared and married in Illinois, and for a number of years was a pilot on the Mississippi River being a contemporary in that occupation with Mark Twain. It was in 1856 that he came to Kansas locating on the “Neutral Strip” in what is now Crawford County. He was one of the pioneers who settled there by arrangement with the Indiana owners, and his homestead comprised a...

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