Location: Sterling Kansas

Biography of John B. Furstenberg

John B. Furstenberg is the president and treasurer of the Boggs Broom Corn Company and his efforts have been an important factor in making St. Louis the center of the broom corn trade of the world. He is at all times actuated by a most progressive spirit and his initiative and energy have enabled him to formulate new plans that have led to the continued growth and development of the business. He is possessed of the spirit of western enterprise and progress and is by birth, training and preference a western man, for he was born in Sterling, Kansas, July 23, 1888. His father, B. C. Furstenberg, was born in Illinois in 1860 and is now a resident of Wichita, Kansas, where he is engaged in the broom corn business. He married Barbara Rauh, a native of Pennsylvania, who was born in 1858. They were married at Sterling, Kansas, 1n 1886. In the acquirement of his education John B. Furstenberg attended a convent of Hutchinson, Kansas, and afterward became a student in the Salt City College of Hutchinson, from which he was graduated. He began learning the broom corn business under the direction of his father and in 1910 came to St. Louis, where he established the firm of B, C. Furstenberg & Son and later took over the business of the Boggs Broom Corn Company, of which he...

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Biography of Albert Dickens

Albert Dickens. For seventeen years Albert Dickens has been connected with the Department of Instruction in the Kansas State Agricultural College at Manhattan, and as professor of horticulture is a recognized authority in that field, not only in Kansas but throughout the Middle West. Though not born in Kansas, Mr. Dickens has lived in the state for the past forty years and is thoroughly familiar with its general agricultural conditions and its people. He was born at Anoka, Anoka County, Minnesota, October 24, 1867. When he was nine years of age his parents came to Kansas and in 1876 settled on a farm near Sterling, Rice County, where they were pioneers. William and Sarah (Ridge) Dickens, his parents, were natives of England. They came when young with their respective parents to the United States. They were identified during their early married life with the northwestern frontier in Minnesota and afterwards were industrious and capable farmers in Rice County, Kansas. Reared on a farm, Albert Dickens had to make the best of his advantages, limited as they were. An older sister gave him much encouragement and assistance in his studies as a boy, and he also attended the country schools. After an examination he entered the Kansas State Agricultural College in January, 1890, and was graduated Bachelor of Science in 1893. Mr. Dickens has been connected with some form of...

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Biography of C. H. Fortner, M. D.

C. H. Fortner, M. D., has long enjoyed a well-earned reputation and position in the medical profession at Coffeyville. He entered practice with a thorough and comprehensive training and his fine talent soon attracted to him a patronage that has grown steadily in volume and importance, while his participation in progressive movements has made him one of the community’s most valuable and valued citizens. Doctor Fortner represents an old Indiana family. His ancestry goes back through several generations to some Fortners who came from Germany, and the family has lived in this country since colonial times. His grandfather, Aaron Fortner, was born in Indiana in 1831. His people located in Howard County of that state at an early date and he grew up there, followed the trade of wagon maker, and was also a farmer. Politically he was first a whig and later a republican. Aaron Fortner died in Howard County, Indiana, in 1911. His children were: E. L. Fortner, faher of Doctor Fortner; Emma, who lives in Howard County, Indiana, widow of James Roby, who was a farmer; Mattie, who died in Howard County, and her husband, William Myers, a farmer, is also deceased; Dora, lives in Los Angeles, California, the wife of Albert McReynolds; William R. is a mechanic living at Indianapolis; Lillie Washington lives at Alto, Indiana; Grant is also a resident of Indiana. It was...

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Biography of George Brinton Ross

George Brinton Ross is chief grain inspector of Kansas. His residence is still at Sterling and in Rice County his activities as a farmer, business man and banker have been centered for over thirty years. Mr. Ross was instrumental in securing the passage of a bill by which the office of the state grain department was removed from Topeka to Kansas City, Kansas. This had proved a wise measure, since it had enabled the grain department to perform the business which this inspection service deserves. It had increased the volume of business performed by the department, since it places all the grain landed on Kansas City, Kansas, side readily accessible to the inspectors. There is no state in the Union that now contains a higher efficiency in its grain inspection than Kansas. Those competent to judge say that this improvement is principally due to George B. Ross and at least there can be no question that the department standards and service have improved 100 per cent since he came into office. Mr. Ross came to Kansas a poor boy in the early ’80s and even he is willing to admit that he had made something more than a moderate amount of success in farming, stock raising and business affairs generally. George Brinton Ross was born on a farm in Whitley County, Indiana, August 12, 1864. He was one of...

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Biography of Joseph Hubbard Butler

Joseph Hubbard Butler, a representative of a pioneer family of Oklahoma, bears a name that has long been an honored one in business circles and public affairs of this part of the state and is now serving as Vice President of the Home Farm Mortgage Company of Vinita, displaying enterprise, determination and administrative ability in the control of his interests. He was born in Kokomo, Indiana, October 12, 1870, of the marriage of Hardy H. and Mary Butler, who were also natives of the Hoosier state. The father engaged in merchandising at Kokomo until 1877, when he went to Sterling, Rice County, Kansas, where he had farming interests, and there conducted an implement business, while he also took an active part in public affairs of that place, being elected police judge on the Republican ticket. In 1884 he came to Indian Territory and for three years devoted his attention to farming and stock raising near Afton, removing in 1887 to Vinita, where he engaged in the wholesale and retail hay and grain business. In 1892 he established his home in Miami, Ottawa County, becoming one of its leading citizens. He served as the first Mayor of the town, was deputy clerk of the United States court at Miami, a member of the council and was again chosen for the office of Mayor, making a most creditable record as a...

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Stone, Karl R. – Obituary

Karl Roy Stone, a well-known La Grande businessman and longtime head of the Union County Planning Commission, died Saturday at Grande Ronde Hospital. He was 89. Mr. Stone, of 1703 Cedar St., was born on Sept. 15, 1895, in Sterling, Kan., to Robert and Amalia “Mollie” Birk. He served with the U.S. Army during World War I, and was corporal of the honor guards at the funeral of Buffalo Bill Cody at Pike’s Peak, Colo. He married Genevieve Rogers at Watertown, N.Y., on Aug. 27, 1919. The couple homesteaded near Reedsport in 1920, and Mr. Stone owned and operated the Reedsport Creamery from 1921 to 1926. He was in the creamery business in Klamath Falls, Eugene, Springfield and Portland from 1926 until 1945, when the couple moved to La Grande. Mr. Stone owned and operated Stone’s Cream Station from 1945 to 1960, and served as Union County fruit fly inspector from 1960 to 1965. He served as administrator for the Union County Planning Commission from December 1965 until June 1976. Mr. Stone was a member and deacon emeritus of the First United Presbyterian Church of La Grande. He was a member of the La Grande Lodge No. 41 A.F. & A.M., Baker Consistory Scottish Rite; Union Council No. 5 Royal and Select Masons, La Grande Chapter 9 Royal Arch Masons; Eastern Oregon Commandary No. 6 Knight Templar, Al Kader...

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Biography of James F. Gilliland

James F. Gilliland, principal of the high school of Arkansas City, is a graduate of the University of Kansas and had been active in educational work from school days. He worked his way through college and university partly by teaching. A native of Kansas, he was born near Beloit, in Mitchell County, March 22, 1881. His Gilliland ancestors were Scotch-Irish people who were early settlers in the State of Pennsylvania. His father, Henry Clay Gilliland, was born in Iowa, March 31, 1842, grew up near Washington, Iowa, and spent his active career as a farmer. When he was still under age in 1861 he enlisted in the Seventh Iowa Infantry and made a notable record as a Union soldier. He first participated in some of the great campaigns in the Middle West under General Grant, serving during the siege of Fort Donelson and Fort Henry, afterwards in the battles of Shiloh and Corinth, and then became part of Sherman’s magnificent army, serving at Chattanooga, Lookout Mountain, on the Atlanta campaign, and was severely wounded at the battle of Resaca. After that battle he was confined in an army hospital for several months. In 1871 he settled on a quarter section homestead near Beloit, Kansas. He developed a farm there, and most of his children were born and partly reared in that community. In 1895 he sold out his interest...

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Biography of D. D. Ross Turner Campbell

Ross Turner Campbell, D. D., who had been president of Cooper College at Sterling since 1910, had given the best years of his life to the ministry and teachers, affiliated for generations with the United Presbyterian Church. Mr. Campbell was born at Clifton in Greene County, Ohio, December 1, 1863. His great-grandfather was Alexander Campbell, who was born in the Highlands of Scotland, went from there to County Derry, Ireland, and in 1790 arrived in the United States, locating on a farm in Bart Township of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He was a substantial farmer, and died at Newcastle, Pennsylvania, in 1845. The maiden name of his wife was Jane Chambers. The grandfather of President Campbell was Ross Alexander Campbell, who was born near Mount Pleasant in Bart Township of Lancaster County May 1, 1799. He spent practically all his life in that township, all his children were born and reared there, and, like his father, he followed the pursuits of an agriculturist. He married Sarah Barclay. Rev. William A. Campbell, father of Ross T., was born on his father’s farm in Lancaster County in 1829, grew up there in a rural environment, and for three years taught school in Pennsylvania. He then entered the Xenia Theological Seminary at Xenia, Ohio, graduating September 3, 1861. He was then ordained a minister of the United Presbyterian Church, and for sixteen years...

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Biography of Samuel A. Wilson

Samuel A. Wilson, professor of Latin and Greek at Cooper College, was one of the first body of instructors in that institution when it was opened in 1887. At that time he was given the chair of languages and his influence as a teacher and Christian gentleman had entered into the lives of all the students who in the past thirty years have passed through the halls of that institution. Mr. Wilson is of Scotch-Irish stock. His great-grandfather. Archibald Wilson, was born in Ireland May 17, 1772, and learned the trade of weaver. In 1791, when nineteen years old, he came to the United States and located in South Carolina. He died July 5, 1826. He and his wife, Martha, had five sons and five daughters. Archibald Wilson, Jr., grandfather of Professor Wilson, was born in South Carolina January 5, 1808. He married in that state, but on account of his strong opposition to the institution of slavery he sought a home in the North and joined the pioneers who were reclaiming a portion of the wilderness of the State of Indiana, locating at Ellettsville, where he lived until his death March 9, 1881. He married Elizabeth C. Wier, who was born in South Carolina January 24, 1812, and died at Monmouth, Illinois, September 29, 1892. Of their children only one is now living, William B., who was born...

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Biography of Thomas H. Brown

Thomas H. Brown. It was a most unusual career of self achievement and broad and successful service in business and personal service that came to a close with the death of Thomas H. Brown at Sterling on February 4, 1916. Though his death came suddenly and was a heavy loss to his wide community of friends and business associates, he had reached the full maturity of three score and ten. But the forces of his personality and character were not those which vanish quickly with the mortal presence. He would probably have been the last among men to anticipate a permanent place in the world’s memory, but in his sphere–and that a large one–enacted with care and success those roles of human endeavor which longest deserve the admiration and homage of succeeding generations. Thomas Hayes Brown was born in West Walton, Northropshire, England, July 13, 1845. His father died there in 1853 and was buried in the churchyard of an historic old church said to have been built by the Romans. A number of years ago one of the chapel doors of this ancient building fell into a state of disrepair. Mr. Brown, who in the meantime had achieved success in America, with some of his brothers and sisters replaced it with a large memorial door dedicated to the memory of their father. In 1855, when Thomas H. was...

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Biography of George J. Brown

George J. Brown, president of the Citizens State Bank of Sterling, is a son of the late Thomas H. Brown, whose career had been previously sketched. George J. Brown was born in the home of his parents at Norway, Iowa, September 26, 1879, but had lived in Sterling since very early childhood. He graduated from the local high school in 1897 and later attended A. N. Palmer’s Business College at Cedar Rapids, Iowa. At the age of eighteen he began work in his father’s bank as bookkeeper, was promoted to assistant cashier, and since the death of his father had been president of the Citizens State Bank. In point of resources and strength this is one of the largest banks in this section of Kansas. It had a capital of $50,000 and surplus of $30,000. The other officers are W. J. Squire, vice president; Thomas Atkinson, cashier; and Walter W. Waring, assistant cashier. Mr. Brown had numerous other business interests, being treasurer and director of the Kansas Central Indemnity Company at Hutchinson, a director of the Raymond State Bank and the Oil and Gas Company of El Dorado and is interested in several other oil companies. Mr. Brown is one of the youngest if not the youngest bank president in the state. He served as city treasurer of Sterling four years and is an active republican. Fraternally he is...

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Biography of John R. Beeching

John R. Beeching is a lawyer and since 1910 had been accumulating a large general practice and a rising reputation at the bar of Hutchinson. Mr. Beeching is a native Kansan, and represents a pioneer family in Rush County, where he was born February 19, 1884. His grandfather, Charles Beeching, was an Englishman, born in 1830, was a mechanic by trade, and on coming to America first settled in Connecticut and afterwards moved to Huntington, Indiana, where he died in 1898. Perry Beeching, father of the Hutchinson lawyer, was born in Connecticut in 1858. He was reared at Huntington, Indiana, and in 1880 joined the early settlers of Rush County, Kansas. The old homestead of 160 acres which he took up on going there was developed as a fine farm home and he continued his residence on it until his death in 1915. The homestead was only the nucleus which represented his successful efforts as a farmer, and at the time of his death he owned 1,120 acres. He was a democrat in politics. Perry Beeching married Lizzie Van Gorder. She was born at Ellenville, New York, in 1858, and is now living at Hutchinson. Her children are: Charles Lee, a graduate of the University Medical College of Kansas City and of the Navy Medical College at Washington, D. C., and now connected in a professional capacity with the...

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Biography of Charles W. Sample

Charles W. Sample has been a business man at Kingman nearly forty years and had been closely identified with the commercial affairs of that city, as a land owner, banker and in real estate and loans. Mr. Sample was born in Jefferson County, Indiana, October 29, 1851. His ancestors came out of Ireland and settled in Virginia in colonial days. His grandfather, Andrew Sample, was a pioneer farmer in Indiana and died in Jefferson County in that state in 1854. George W. Sample, father of Charles W., was born in Jefferson County, Indiana, in 1815, a date which indicates the early settlement of the family in that state. Indiana was not admitted to the union until 1816. George W. Sample spent his life as a farmer, and in 1853 removed to Tipton County, Indiana, where he spent his last years and where he died in 1872. He was a democrat and an active member and on the official board of the Baptist Church. He married in Jefferson County, Indiana, Adaline McKay, who was born in that county in 1820 and died in Tipton County in 1896. They were the parents of seven children, Charles W. being the fifth in age and the only one now living. Henrietta, who died in Clinton County, Indiana, was the wife of Isaac Houghman, a farmer also deceased. The other children were named Berdelia,...

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Biography of Talbert Jackson English

Talbert Jackson English, president of the First National Bank of Sterling, is one of the few mature business men and citizens who can claim Rice County as the place of their nativity. Mr. English had had an active business career in different lines, but for many years had been identified with the bank of which he is now the head. He was born near Sterling in Rice County, Kansas, November 20, 1874. His father is John McCollister English, who became widely known in this section of Kansas as a land owner and capitalist. The ancestry of this family goes back to Northern Ireland and is Scotch-Irish. In former generations the name was spelled Inglish. In 1798 two brothers and a sister of the family came to America and settled in Virginia. T. J. English’s grandfather was James Tolbert English, who was born in 1816. He lived in Chillicothe, Ohio; Sangamon County, Illinois; Danville, Illinois, and finally retired and came to Kansas, dying at Sterling in 1897. John McCollister English was born at Chillicothe, Ohio, in 1845, and was reared partly there and partly in Sangamon County, Illinois. For some years he was in the merchandise business at Mount Auburn, Indiana. In October, 1871, in a conveyance drawn by one horse, he and his little family started for Kansas. That was the very month that the great Chicago fire took...

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Biography of William Christee Smyser

William Christee Smyser, who died at Sterling, Kansas, August 9, 1917, had been for thirty-five years a resident of that section of the state. Few men have assumed and carried out to such a successful conclusion the larger responsibilities of business affairs. One of the outstanding characteristics of big business men is a quiet efficiency of performance that handles a great volume of work with a notable absence of noise and confusion. This quiet efficiency was a mark of Mr. Smyser’s entire career. Under his direction large affairs were transacted and things got themselves done in the form of concrete results, but in such a way as to attract little notice to the source of the power and energy. The foundation of his business success was laid during his connection with the broom corn industry of Western Kansas. For a number of years he was one of the most extensive dealers in this crop, buying in carload lots. After he gave this up he concentrated all his time upon the buying and feeding of sheep, and was undoubtedly one of the biggest producers of mutton and wool in the State of Kansas. He amassed a large property in farm land and always lived in close touch with the soil. He was a student of farming from its scientific as well as practical point of view. He knew and understood...

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