Emma Elizabeth Calderhead Foster.

History of Marshall County, Kansas : its people, industries, and institutions online

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at the Excelsior mills.

The Farmers Co-operative Mercantile Association carries on a general
store, which is run on a cash basis. O. E. Hardesty is the manager, assisted
by Ted White, George Blackman, Ellen Schafer and Cynthia Brubaker.

Miss Olive Waters is the very efficient postmistress. George Williams


runs the blacksmith shop. Morgan Hedge & Son are engaged in the himber
and coal trade. Clement DeLair, a son of Susan DeLair, conducts a furniture
store. Ray Eley handles hardware and implements and sells automobiles.
Cecil Shandony runs a restaurant. Carl Naaf has a garage, and Fred
Schafer, a butcher shop. A\'ill Farrant is engaged in the harness business,
and Clarence Long has a neat barber shop. Edgar Hardenbrook is the
druggist. He was formerly the police judge and was succeeded by his wife
in the April election. R. F. Montgomeiy is editor and proprietor of the
Okcto Eagle. Rev. Frank Jackson is the resident pastor of the Methodist
Episcopal church. The present population of Oketo is two hundred and
sixty-nine. The present resident physician is O. P. Wood, M. D.

Among those who, living in and around the city, have contributed largely
to its prosperity are : Peter Champagn, William E. Smith, Thomas and John
Howes, Araminta Dolan, J. G. Schmidler, Vancel Malecky, Joseph Zara-
borickey, T. J. and J. Suggett and Thomas Devers.

It may be added that when the old Oketo was abandoned, the postoffice
was removed to the present town.

Old Oketo was somewhat a rendevouz for the flotsam and jetsam of the
age. The present city of Oketo is ample evidence of the fact that good farm-
ers and legitimate business industries will soon be followed by schools and
churches and wholesome moral influence.

Oketo of today is the result of conscientious effort on the part of good
men and women, to build homes and create a pleasant community center in
which to live.


The election of April, 1917, resulted in the following city ticket being
elected: Alayor, Mrs. Z. H. Moore; clerk, Mrs. O. P. Wood; police judge,
Mrs. Hardenbrook : city council, Mrs. F. L. Root, jMrs. E. H. Moore, Mrs.
\A\ W. White, ^Irs. O. E. Hardesty and Airs. W. W. Ely.

The present city of Oketo was incorporated in 1890 with three hundred
and six inhabitants. The first officers were : F. B. Tatman, mayor ; E.
Burke, police judge; council, M. C. Brainard, W. J. Dunnuck, J. H. Moore,
Ray Eley, F. AI. Schafer, C. ^I. DeLair and E. Hedge.


In the spring of 1856 the Palmetto Town Company was organized in
Atchison with eighty-four members, nearly all Southerners. They were


mostly young men who had come into the territory in the interests of the
South. Thirty-five members came out from Atchison and arrived at
Palmetto on July 8, 1856, among whom may be mentioned, J. S. Magill, J.
P. Aliller, O. D. Prentis, Albert Morall, W. B. Jenkins, J. R. Alston, John
Vanderhorst, A. S. Vaught and R. Y. Shibley. Of this colony only one,
R. Y. Shiblev, now resides in Marvsville and nearlv all are dead.

- ml

The colony filed upon and laid out a townsite, for which Shibley, who
was then a boy, paid. Shibley had left his home in South Carolina in search
of adventure and the stirring scenes of the territory appealed to him. He
had a monthly allowance from relatives. This was known to the others in
the party, who induced him to pay for the pre-emption and it was entered in
the land office on September 25, as the town of Palmetto.

The progress of the new town was slow. Finances were at a low ebb
and Shibley's allowance soon disappeared, when levied on by the thirstv mem-
bers of the Palmetto Company.


In 1856 Doctor ]\liller built a log cabin on the claim, this being the only
improvement made during the year. Wagons furnished shelter for all, and
the time was spent in bartering with the Indians, talking with emigrants and
assuaging a constant and ever-increasing thirst. The game of quoits, or as
it was then called, "pitching horse-shoe," furnished amusement for the many
idle hours with which these pioneers were amply endowed.

About this time F. J. ^Marshall, John and James Doniphan, who had
formed a company and were incorporated on August 27, 1855, bought up
one hundred shares of the Palmetto Company's stock, which gave them a
controlling interest.

The Alarshall-Doniphan Company then had an addition of three hun-
dred and twenty acres laid off, on the north half of section 33, township 2,
range 7. The northwest one-quarter was Alarysville addition to the town
of Palmetto, and the northeast one-quarter was Ballard & Morrall's addition
to the city of Alany^sville. (Morrall was one of the Palmetto Company.)
This scheme and the then powerful influence of Marshall soon made Alarys-
ville the leading portion of this tract.


The village of Schroyer, on the Lincoln and ^Manhattan branch of the
Union Pacific railroad, is located near the Big Blue river, six miles south of


Marvsville. ll was laid out by Philip Schroyer on his farm in 1896, the
same year the railroad was built.

Edward Dargatz erected the llrst general merchandise store and resi-
dence and was then appointed postmaster.

A Mr. LaRue followed with a blacksmith shop and G. B. Stocks, of Blue
Rapids, built a shed and cribs and bought grain.

Mr. Dargatz succeeded Stocks. He sold to Hammett Brothers, who
built and operated an elevator, and bought and shipped grain and live stock
for many years. They sold out to the Farmers Union, which is conducting
the elevator at present.

Krause Brothers succeeded Dargatz in the mercantile business and they
were succeeded by Gottlieb Ziegler, who sold to A. Ham.

Joseph Barta built a store on the bottom near the depot in 1889 and he
is now- the only merchant in the town. He has a stock of general merchan-
dise, hardware and farm implements and has been the postmaster for four-
teen years.


In I goo a steel bridge costing three thousand dollars was built across
the river, the county paying two thousand dollars toward it and the balance
was donated by the neighboring farmers and the business men of the town.
Peter Schroyer was the financial surety to the county for the amount neces-
sary above what the county furnished.

With the bridge came new business. Stores, butcher shop, barber shop,
implement store and a new blacksmith shop, pool hall and restaurant w^ere
opened up, and later a Methodist church and school house were built, and for
a number of years Schroyer remained quite an important trading point.

Then the automobile came and with it disaster to the small town. At one
time Schroyer had a population of one hundred and twenty-five. At present
there are Joe Barta's store and postoffice, Farmers Union elevator, Methodist
church and school house and the depot, while the population has diminished
to a total of forty-one souls.

Schroyer is still a good grain market, handling about one hundred cars
annually. The town was named Schro^^er in honor of the well-known pio-
neer family of that nanie, and many of the family still live near it.


This ground, on the highest point in the surrounding country, was laid
out, a stone wall built, and cedars and other shrubbery planted to beautify


it, by Philip Schroyer, who intended it as a family burying ground for the
Schroyer family.

There is but one gTa\'e within the walls, that of an infant. The de-
ceased members^of the Schroyer family have been interred in the Marysville
cemetery. Mr. Schroyer is still living, making his home in Oklahoma. This
is indeed a lone grave cemetery.


Summerheld is located in the northeast part of Marshall county, partly
in St. Bridget and Richland townships. The Missouri Pacific railroad runs
through the city ; this branch is commonly known as the Kansas City &
Northwestern. The Kansas-Nebraska state line bounds the city limits on
the north.

The town was named in honor of Elias Summerfield, who was at that
time superintendent of the railroad, ^vhich was completed to Virginia, Neb-
raska, its preseht terminal. The date on which the first train came into the
town was near the first of the year 1889..

In the year i8S8 the Summerfield Townsite Company was formed and
purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land, located in St. Bridget town-
ship, from John Smiley and eighty acres from Capt. C. F. McCulloch. On
this land the original town was laid out. Two additions have been made
to the original plat. One known as Smiley's Addition and the other as
Joseph's Addition, and this land, comprising about sixty-seven acres, was
purchased from W. H. Joseph in Richland township, which joins St. Bridget
township on the west. •:


]n the spring of 1S90 the town was incorporated and the following
officers were elected : Mayor, R. G. Cunningham ; clerk, J. M. Kendall ; city
council, I. Jay Nichols, H. E. Adams, C. J. O'Neil, D. Swartout and E. M.
Miller. E. H. Rundle was appointed marshal. The population of the town
at the time of incorporation was about one hundred persons.

The first firm of grain buyers were Davis & Gilchrist, from Seneca;
George Hibbard was their manager.

The first elevator for grain v>as built for O'Xcil Brothers, who also
owned and operated a hardware and implement store. The second ele-


vator was l)nilt in 1S03, for the Brunswig Elevator Company, Frank Tho-
mann, nianai^er. A tliird elcxator was l)nilt in 1893, known as the Farm-
ers Elevator. .Vtter some time the latter organization disbanded.

Among those who early located in Summerficld were Dr. J. 11. Mur-
phy and Dr. William Johnston.

The first carpenters were David Wilson, George Van Allen, James
Monroe and Webster Brothers.

The first draymen were Charles Travelute, George Curtis and a col-
ored man named John Nelson.

The first postmaster was Capt. James Hemphill.

The first child born in the town was a son to Mr. and Mrs. Frank
Heard. The baby was named Summerficld in honor of the town.


The first newspaper was published by Edward and Flarry Felt, sons of
Hon. A. J. Felt, of Seneca, former lieutenant-governor of Kansas. The
office was in the second story of the I. Jay Nichols building, and the pro-
prietors shared'the floor with a hardware and implement dealer. The name
of the paper was the Summerficld Sun, and it was a bright, newsy sheet.
The first story of the building was used as a livery barn and feed stable. It
was totally destroyed by fire in 1892. The paper is now published by C. E.

A. A. Gearhart built a livery barn on the same site and a few years
later it v\'as burned and Mr. Gearhart lost a number of horses in the fire.
Later, the present livery barn was built on the same site.

A great fire occurred on June 29, 1894, when almost the entire busi-
ness portion of the city was redu.ced to ashes. The fire started in the store
building owned by H. H. Lowrey, wliich was situated on the corner now
occupied by the Berens store, and destroyed every store building north to
the J. FI. Moore stone structure, then in process of building, now occupied
by R. W. Nelson.

The following is a list of the stores burned: H. H. Lowrey, general
merchandise; R. W. Hemphill, A-ariety and book store; WTiester & Tho-
mann, drugs; Frank Thomann. hardware; J. H. Moore & Sons,- general
merchandise. The loss was near one hundred thousand dollars.

The ruins had harrlly quit smoking when preparations were begun for
larger and more substantial buildings.



Many buildino's were in course of construction before train service
began. The building material was hauled from Beattie and Axtell, as
were groceries and provisions.

The first store building was erected by Heard & McGinty. E. J.
Smiley and J. J. McClennan ran a grocery store in the basement of the old
Smiley house now owned by A. B. Garrison.

An auction sale of town lots was held in February, 1889; William
Speak, of Axtell, was the auctioneer.

Among early business firms were the following:

Cunningham & Mohrbacher, general mercantile business and harvest-
ing machinery.

Smiley & Lock conducted a large mercantile establishment.

H. H. Lourey & Company, dry goods, groceries and furnishing goods.

J. H. Moore & Son, general merchandise.

Swartout, Smith & Son. general merchandise.

Suniinciiicld Sun, weekly; editor, Ed Felt.

Wuester & Thomann, pharmacists.

J. H. Murphy, druggist.

F. Baringer, groceries.

Welsh & Brady, general merchandise.

C. J. & J. C. O'Neil, department stores.

Flemine & Adams, lumber; successors to Russell & Schutt.

E. M. Miller, lumber.

]\lisses Moriarly & Creevan. millinery and dressmaking.

Mrs. Annie E. Sidvvell, milliner.

Mohrbacher Brothers, photographers.

G. C. Moore, restaurant.
W. A. Huston, restaurant.

August Eisenbach. bakery and diningroom.

Weston «&: Shadle, hardware.

Myers & Miller, meat market.

J. J. Nichols, hardware and livery.

Charles Usher, livery barn.

C. W. Washington, John Martin, barbers.

W. H. Smith, variety store.

T. Hutton, blacksmith.


Henry Maitland. real estate, justice n\ peace and n')tar\- public.

William Johnson. pli\sician.

Jacob Hoftinan. billiard parlor.

Burnett House, hotel.

Al. \\ . Terry, lawyer.

William Kennemur. paperhanger.


The amount of business transacted in Summertield is a surprise to
those not familiar with the town. In 1916 the elevators handled abnut t\vo
hundred thousand bushels of grain. The deposits in the State Bank of
Summerfield duringi9i6 amounted to two hundred and fifty thousand dol-
lars. This makes it the third in line of deposits among the twenty-seven
banks of Marshall county.

Wdiile not a dairy center, fifteen thousand dollars worth of cream was
sold during the past year. There are forty business houses in the town and
all are prosperous.

Summerfield has five miles of sidewalk, well-graded streets, a splendid
park, manv fine residences and three churches, with good congregations.
Fifty automobiles are owned in the town. This pretty little city more than
justifies its reputation as being one of the most prosperous and active busi-
ness centers of northern Kansas. The people of Marshall countv on No-
vember 7, 1916, elected one of its leading citizens, Hon. F. G. Bergen, to
represent them in the Legislature, as state senator.


Vermillion is a pleasant little town of about four hlindred inhabitants,
situated in the S(Uitheastern part of Marshall county on the Central Branch
railroad. It is one hundred and seventeen miles from Kansas Citv, ninety
miles from St. Joseph and seventy miles west of Atchison.

The town was laid out in the fall of 1869 by G. R. Kelley, Theo. Collier
and the railroad company. The original townsite, consisting of tAvo hun-
dred and forty acres, was owned as follows : Railroad company, fortv acres ;
G. R. Kellev, one hundred and sixtv acres; Theo. Collier, fortv acres. Col-


Her and Kelley gave one-half of their interests to the raih-oad company,
which' laid out the town, built a depot and side track.

The first building erected on the townsite was built by W. H. Dickinson
in the spring of 1870 and used as a store. Soon after a large building was
erected by Robert Shields for a store. In 1872 this building was used as a
hotel and managed by a Mr. Bryon until 1875.

The first Ijirth was that of Frank, a son of Theo. Collier in August,
1870. The first marriage ceremony took place in 1875, the contracting
parties being Anderson Duffy and Eva Burt, who are still living in Ver-
million. The first death was that of George Collier in the spring of 1870.
The first postoffice was established in 1870, with Theo. Collier as postmaster.
J. L. Rogers is postmaster, January, 191 7.


Among the settlers who located in the vicinity of Vermillion prior to
i860 were j. Knapp, E. Lewis, W. Warren, Major Beattie, I. Blades, J.
KenW'Orthv, S. Osgood and Samuel Smith.

In the summer of 1874, G. W. Duffy built an elevator with a capacity of
three thousand bushels, and operated it until 1878. At present this elevator
is operated by Watson brothers.

In i8q5 Ed Horth built an elevator. After changing ovvners a number
of times, it is now owned by T. J. Smith.

The depot was built in the fall of 1869. Theo. Collier was the first
agent, followed by S. Arnold.

Samuel C. Calderhead, a brother of the historian, was the first tele-
grapher; also the first agent who kept a double-entry system of books. The
present operator is I. N. Moore.

The telephone system was organized by P. H. Hvbskmann and H. D.
Williams. The first connection was made in 1901. The plant was sold to
J. O. Puntney in 1907.

In 1895 three acetylene lights were placed on posts in different parts
of the business section of town. A year later two gasoline lamps were added,
to be followed by lanterns placed near dangerous crossings and bridges.

In the spring of 1914 Forrest Warren, editor of the Vermillion Times,
began ag-itating the subject of electric lights for the town. As a result of
the untiring efforts of Warren, Mayor Hybskmann and the city council, bonds
to the amount of seven thousand dollars were voted to build a transmission
line from Frankfort to Vermillion. The completion of this line was cele-


brated on August 13 and 14. 19 14, 1)y a three-days carnival, at which Hon.
W. A. Calderhead. of Marysville; Hon. Sheffield Ingalls. of Atchison; Ed
Howe, the well-knoAvn editor, also of Atchison, and many other prominent
speakers made addresses. The largest crowd ever gathered in this part of
the county was in attendance.

The city erected a public hall for its use, a room in which was set apart
and donated to the Alutual Improvement Club for a library room.


School district No. 12 was organized in 1864. with only three families
in the district. The school house was built Ijy the United Brethren and used
In' them for religious services. Martha Lewis, R. ^liddleton, W. Spear and
Mrs. J. X. Acker were among the first teachers.

During this time the district was divided and this school building was
moved to one mile west of town.

In 1872 a new frame building, twenty-four by forty-four feet, was
erected at a cost of two thousand dollars. The first teacher in the new build-
ing was L. B. Holmes. Additions were made to this building until 1903-4,
when the original building was moved onto an adjacent lot and a fine brick
building, modern in e\erv way, was erected and at the present time is under
the Barnes liigh school law. Prof. C. Kraemer is principal. Fifty-eight
pupils are enrolled in the high school.


The Mutual Improvement Club, of Vermillion, is one of the most useful
societies of the town. It was organized in 1903 at the home of Mrs. Carrie
Arnold, with eight members. The objects of the club are the betterment
of local social conditions and mutual mental improvement.

A public library was soon opened and is maintained by a fee of one
dollar, paid by each member, by public entertainments and by donations of
books and cash by the general public.

The members have been very diligent in keeping up the number and
quality of the books and now have one thousand four hundred volumes,
which have been carefully selected. The library is safely housed in a fire-
proof room in the city hall, which is furnished free of rent by the city. The
club has thirty members. A neat year book is issued annually and the club
and library are considered strong educational factors in the community. The


names of the past presidents follow: Ella Acker, Viva McWilliams, Rose
Cook, Carrie Arnold, Anna Dewalt, Lena Granger, Lena McLeod, Lucy May
Curtis, Rose Clifton, Mary Buckles, Margaret Warren, Allie B. Rogers.
Mrs. Rogers is the present president of the club.


The Vermillion Cemetery Association was organized on March 31, 1887.
The cemetery is about one mile west of town, is beautifully located and kept
in perfect order. The present officials are: W. H. Dewalt, president; C. S.
Schafer, secretary ; William Acker, treasurer, and G. W. Duffy, C. L. Shafer,


This band was organized on April 11, 1914, with nineteen members.
The first officers were : President, Mrs. Carrie Davis ; vice-president, Ethel
Leonard ; secretary. Merle Schafer ; treasurer, Lenora Granger.

Instrumentation. — -Grace Buckles, Ethel Tompkins. Merle Schafer, Nina
Warren, Laura Duffy, cornet players ; Mabel Warren, Beatrice Clifton, Fern
Hybskmann, Louise Schuyler, Mrs. Lee Davis, altos; Mildred Mesmer, Lois
Meredith, tenors ; Lenora Granger, baritone ; Mrs. Arthur Cooke, Edna
Buckles, Stella Curtis, trombones; Mabel Schrair, bass drum; Hazel Havens,
snare drum.

This band played at the Farm and Home In.stitute meetings, at a Fourth
of July picnic at Lillis, and accompanied Mr. Henry J. Allen in his campaign
for governor through Marshall county. The band receives manv compli-
ments on its membership and musical ability.


An organization of more than local importance is the Farm and Home
Listitute, which is held annuallv in Vermillion. The first org^anization was
formed in IQ12, with W. F. Robinson, president and William Acker, secre-

The first Listitute was held in January, 191 3, and was a one-day meet-
ing. The second Institute was held on November 24 and 25, .1913. The
attendance was larger and a woman's department, as well as grain, vege-
table, fruit and educational departments, was added. At this meeting
Samuel Stewart was elected president and H. C. Schafer, secretary.



In 19 1 4 the Institute was held December 2 and 3 and in 1915 on Octo-
ber 20-21. By this lime the organization was well on its feet. Splendid
programs were arranged, the display of products attractive and about four
thousand people attended.

The 19 1 6 Institute attracted the attention of the state papers. The
meeting was held on October 24-25-26, and in spite of the dry season a fine
display of farm products was made. The agricultural exhibits were corn,
wheat, oats and rye : and some fine fruit was also shown. The exhibit of
live stock was very fine and the poultr}' exhibit better than that of the county
fair, in variety and number. The domestic department was well represented
and very creditable. The fine display of needlework received much praise.

A corps of instructors and judges were present from the State Agricul-
tural College and many fine features were added. Lectures on farm, school
and home subjects were given by experts and great credit is due the little
city of Vermillion and her people for their progressive efforts along home
improvement lines.

The following are the officers for 191 7: President, E. E. Woodman;
secretary-treasurer/H. S. FHshop: vice-presidents, Andrew Kjellberg, C. R.
Wallace, L. W. Davis, Everett Nelson, Sam Stewart and E. Schubert.


Hardware and farm implements, T. F. Smith.

General merchandise. Granger & Son.

Meat market and grocery store, Ijames & Twidwell.

Meat market and groceries, Nash & Sons.

Harness shop and men's shoe store, Glen Grable.

Restaurant and hotel. Fount Tate.

Restaurant and hotel, George Duffy.

Furniture and undertaking, Mrs. Richards.

Drug store, Walter Sams.

Garage, Anton Lobbe.

Thoroughbred poultry, j. L. Rogers.

Lumber, Andrew Johnson.

Wagon-making and repairing, F. M. Andrews.

Garage, Robert Perlett.

Barber, W. B. Malcolm.

Millinery store, Cooke & Ellis.

Cream station, Milo Tate, manager.


Elevator, Watson Brothers.

Elevator, T. F. Smith.

Hardware store, Charles Schafer.

Postmaster, Everett Nelson.

Acker garage, William Acker, proprietor.


Vliets, Noble township, is one of the busy little villages of Marshall
county. It is located on the Central Branch railroad between Vermillion
and Frankfort, and has a population of about one hundred fifty. It was
founded in 1889 and platted and laid out on the Van Vleit farm and named
for that family.

The East elevator, now owned and operated by W. T. Buck, was built

Online LibraryEmma Elizabeth Calderhead FosterHistory of Marshall County, Kansas : its people, industries, and institutions → online text (page 17 of 104)