Emma Elizabeth Calderhead Foster.

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

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Marshall county, states Mr. Jacob Mohrbacher, was elected chairman of the
county board for the ensuing year at its first meeting; and in relation to
the bond question gives the following facts : On Tuesday the board issued
to the St. Joseph & Denver City Railroad Com^Dany fifty thousand dollars
worth of bonds and turned them over to Dudley M. Steele, the president of
the company; and fifty thousand dollars more of bonds will be turned over
to them in a few days. Fifty thousand dollars in stock in said road has been
turned over to the county treasurer, and the other fifty thousand will be
turned over upon the delivery of the remainder of the bonds to the president
of the railroad company.

January 13, 1871 — From the Locomotive we learn that the St. Joseph &
Denver City Railroad have located their depot in Marysville on what is known
as the Ballard and Morrall's addition, about one-quarter of a mile from the
business center of the town. The material for the building is already framed,
and the work on the switch is now rapidly going forward.

March 31, 1871 — The St. Joseph & Denver City Railroad Company has
a grant (land) which attaches to a two-mile strip along the west line of the

September 5, 1873 — The St. Joseph & Denver City railroad officers
resign and a committee is appointed to make an investigation into the affairs
of the company.


The Central Branch (now Missouri Pacific) enters Marshall county
from the east and extends through Noble, Vermillion, Bigelow, Blue Rapids,
Blue Rapids City and Waterville townships. Stations on the road are Ver-
million, Vliets, Frankfort, Barrett, Bigelow, Irving, Blue Rapids and Water-
ville. There are thirty-five miles of this road in the county now under the
management of the Missouri Pacific system.

From the first annual report of the Kansas board of railroad commis-
sioners, giving the report of the Central Branch Union Pacific railroad for
the year ending June 30, 1883, the following statement is taken:

The Atchison & Pike's Peak Railroad Company was incorporated by
special act of the Legislature of 1859. (Laws of 1859, page 62.) The act
of incorporation conferred upon the Atchison & Pike's Peak railway the
powers and condition of the act incorporating the Atchison & Fort Riley
Railroad Company, incorporated in 1857. (Laws of 1857, page 198.) This
road received a grant of land by act of Congress, of 187,608 acres, and also
bonds to the amount of $16,000 per mile for 100 miles, by the terms of which
five per cent of the net earnings of this part of the road is paid to the gov-
ernment. Construction of the road was commenced in 1864, and opened
from Atchison to Waterville on January 20, 1868. Its name was changed
to Central Branch Union Pacific Railway on November 20, 1866.

July 12, 1867 — Road completed nearly to Black Vermillion.

November 14, 1867 — The seventy-ninth mile of track completed today.
"The passenger cars will probably run to the new town of Frankfort on
Tuesdav, November 30, the present terminus, seventy-eight and one-half miles
west of Atchison.

December 27, 1867 — Correspondence in the Atchison Weekly Free Press
says : "Railroad projects are getting as common as pretty babies.
There is a company to build up the Big Blue to — nobody knows where.
One to build down the Blue to Manhattan, and one to build a road which is
to cover both the others. . . . Track laying is proceeding rapidly and
should the weather hold good for five days the iron will be down. Too
much credit cannot be accorded Mr. Broder for the energy he has displayed
in pushing the work. A less competent man under the same circumstances,
would have been far behind. He is a man in a thousand."

January 17, 1868 — ^A special train under charge of J. S. Pierce, con-
ductor, conveyed the government railroad commissioners, Gen. N. B. Buford,
Gen. Frank P. Blair and Dr. William N. White to Waterville, the terminus of
the one hundred miles. An engine house, depot and turn-table are being-
constructed. Col. William Osborn, superintendent of the road, and a small



part\- of Atchison citizens accompanied the party. The ride was a pleasant
one and was made at good speed. A heavy snow storm set in during the
progress of the inspection, and the return trip to Atchison was through the
storm all the way. On reaching Atchison the party stopped at the Massasoit
house and enjoyed its hospitalities.

November 23, 1863 — The first rail laid on the Atchison & Pike's Peak,
or Central Branch railroad.

February 15, 1867 — ^The Atchison & Pike's Peak railroad, or Central
Branch, forty miles, receives six hundred and forty thousand dollars in gov-
ernment bonds.

December 29, 1867 — The last rail laid on the one hundred miles of road.

January 20, 1868 — The Atchison & Pike's Peak railroad reaches Water-
ville. It receives sixteen thousands dollars per mile in bonds, and one hun-
dred eighty-seven thousand six hundred eight acres of land from the gov-

Waterville remained the terminal of the Central Branch railroad until
1876, when it was extended to Downs.

In 1S79 the Marysville and Blue Valley railroad was built along the
Big Blue river from Marysville to Beatrice, Nebraska. The towns on this
road in ^Marshall county were ^^larysville, Hull, ^Marietta and Oketo.

In 1886 the Manhattan and Blue Valley railroad was built, followdng
the Blue river from Alarysville to Alanhattan, Kansas. The towns along
this line in Marshall county are Marysville, Schroyer, Blue Rapids and Irv-
ing, v/ith a siding for the stone quarries at Florena. These two branches
later became the Lincoln & Manhattan Branch of the Union Pacific railroad,
connecting the Union Pacific main lines of Kansas and Nebraska at Man-
hattan, Kansas and Valley, Nebraska.

The Topeka, Onaga & Marys^'ille Branch of the Union Pacific railroad,
known as the Topeka "cut-off", eighty-two miles long, running as indicated,
from Topeka to Marysville, was opened for trafiic in 19 10. It was built
for the purpose of shortening the Union Pacific line between Cheyenne,
Wyoming and Kansas City, Missouri, for trans-continental freight and
passenger service. The track is well ballasted and laid wnth the heaviest
steel rails.

This road now practically runs from Kansas City, Missouri, to the west
coast, using the Union Pacific main line tracks in Kansas from Kansas City
to Topeka, then the "cut-oft"' to Marysville, then the St. Jo and Grand Island
to Hastings, Nebraska, from Hastings over the Hastings-Gibbon "cut-ofif",
to Gibbon, Nebraska, where it connects with the Union Pacific main line in


Nebraska, thus making it the shortest route from Kansas City to the West
and Northwest coast, by a great many miles. The towns on this road in
Marshall county are Marysville, Winifred, Frankfort and Lillis.


The roads in ]Marshall county have always been fairly good. The
natural drainage of the county conduces to this condition, and in the days
prior to establishment of section lines, the settlers made cross-country roads,
selecting the best trail possible leading to creek crossings. Little attention
was paid to the upkeep of these prairie lanes of travel. When townships
were organized and officers elected, roads were regularly worked and repaired.

The coming of the automobile inaugurated a great improvement in
public roads. Rough places and hills were blasted and worked down, ap-
proaches to bridges built and culverts repaired.

Tlie countv commissioners lend every aid possible under the law. The
county has three hundred miles of improved county roads which are regu-
larly dragged and kept in excellent condition. Every spring before the
ground becomes too hard, the roads are thoroughly gone over with a grader,
ditches are cleaned out. ruts and holes filled, shoulders on the side of the
road are planed off, grades are improved and, in fact, everything done to
make an ideal road. Bridges and culverts are marked with side shields,
solidlv built to a height of three feet, so that there is no possibility of driv-
ing off', and these shields are painted white and are plainly discernible at
all times.


In 191 3 the Rock Island highway was laid out in the county. This
was the first inter-state highway in the county. The name has been changed
and it is now called the Pikes Peak Ocean to Ocean Highway, extending
from New York to San Francisco.

This road enters Marshall county at Axtell and leaves at the Bohemian
cemetery, on the west line of the county. There are thirty-four miles of
this road in the county and it is plainly marked and kept in splendid condi-
tion. It touches the cities of Axtell, Beattie, Home and Marysville.

The Ocean to Ocean Highway Association met in St. Joseph, Missouri,
early in 191 /, to make plans for further improvement and extension of the
road. Delegates from ^Marysville who attended were C. F. Pusch and S.
C. Schmidt.


Tlic White Way is an inter-state highway, running through the south-
ern part of the county. This road extends from Atchison to Beloit, al)0ut
thirtv-five miles Ijeing in Marshall county. It touches Vermillion, Frank-
fort, Blue Rapids and Waterville. This road joins the Golden Belt road
and runs into Denver.

The Blue \'allcy inter-state highway is a continuation of the Sioux City,
Omaha and Lincoln route. It enters Marshall county eleven miles north of
^vlarysville and follows the river to Blue Rapids, where it crosses the river
and touches Irving; crosses the river to the east side again and runs to
Manhattan. There are thirty-seven miles of this road in the county.

Marshall county has steel markers at all important corners of county
roads, indicating the direction and number of miles to points near and far.

Two thousand two hundred automobiles are now owned in Marshall
county, and the travel o\er the different roads and highways can scarcely
be estimated. Almost every make of car is represented.

Pawnee county, Nebraska, and Marshall county have joined interests
and big plans are under way for the big two-day Good Roads campaign.
Ten miles of road, leading into the city from the east, on the state line, are
to be "made over" and put in passable condition. This will be the biggest
piece of good roads improvement pulled off in northeastern Kansas and
southeastern Nebraska.

Dr. L. R. Stevens, mayor of Summerfield, is president of the Good
Roads Association.

Agriculture and Stock Raising.

By John G. Ellenbecker.

The plowman slowly moves along the fnrrow's mellow wake,
^lade 1)y that glistening shield his good steeds sway.

He well has learned the gait the feet of toil must take.
So as to last with strength and song throughout the day.

Round by round his plow glides through the sod.

Till lo, the mat of grass and weeds is turned to blackened mold.
This is the mete reward for every faithful clod;

This is the rest so well deserved for yield so manifold.

But manv, as they pass him l)y in stately motor car.

Rejoice that they're not in his place, but never dream,
That his path leads through roses and just as lucky star ;

That he is granted heavenly might that they have never seen.

And who,, can sound this subtle cult of his magic, master hand,
Wdio simply plows and sows and reaps and learns nature's arts ;

And who in turn has made of her a servant, faithful, grand.
For all mankind and filled with wealth the world's busy marts.

He is in truth the alchemist the ancients sought in vain ;

'Tis he who makes the desert yield a harvest manifold ;
'Tis he who loads with flower and fruit the boundless plain :

'Tis he who turns the brownest earth into the yellowest gold.


The breeding of live stock, next to general farming, is the greatest
industry in Marshall county, and these two lines of business are so closely


allied that it is almost impossible to draw a definite line between the two. The
lirst settlers brought their cattle and other stock with them and from then
up to the present time the breeding of stock has played a very important p:irt in
the development of the county.

Col. F. M. Wood pays this tribute to the cow :

"It was the cow that made it possible for man to change the great Ameri-
can desert into a land of prosperous homes. When she came, the buffalo
disappeared, the Indian tepee gave way to the church, school house and
home, and where once wild wolves howled, today children prattle, grass
grows, flowers bloom and birds sing."

The development of the live-stock industry in Marshall county may
be divided into three eras. First, the free range; second, the free range,
with a herder, and third, the era of fences. When the first settlers came to
this county they settled along the streams, where there was a good supply
of water and timber, which furnished them with fuel and offered some
protection from the cold winter winds that swept across the then unbroken
prairies. The small bands of cattle that each owned were then branded and
allowed to roam at will to feed and multiply unrestricted. Each fall they
were gathered together and each man picked out the stock that he owned,
marked his season's increase and drove awav to market all that were fit.


With the coming of the homesteader, a rapid change began to take
place and, as more and more fields were broken out and planted, these
semi-wild cattle became a nuisance and many a bitter feud sprang up
between the cattle men and the homesteader. This resulted in the passing
of the herd law, which recjuired each man to keep a herder with his cattle
and that the cattle should be confined at night. This condition prevailed
until the advent of the barbed wire, wdiich marked one of the most radical
changes in the history of the cattle industry. As fast as men could work,
their lands were fenced and the cattle no longer allowed to roam at will.
It w'as at this time that purebred cattle were introduced into the county
and systematic efforts were made t(^. improve the quality as well as to increase
the numbers.

Most of the leading lireeds of live stock are found in the county, but the
breed that has been most important and has undergone the most development,
has been the Hereford. Marshall county has often been termed the Here^
fordshire of Kansas. There is hardly a herd of cattle in the county, except


the pure-breds of the other breeds, that does not show the indelible stamp
of the Hereford strain. Marshall county at one time had more pure-bred
Hereford cattle than any other county in Kansas and probably than any other
like area in the world.


Marshall county was the home of the late Walter M. Morgan, who was
the first man to develop a Hereford herd in the state, although one of his
neighbors, Hiram Woodard, had been handling a few head before this time
and was the first man to bring Here fords to Marshall county. Walter M.
Morgan was born and reared in Herefordshire, England, and it is not surpris-
ing that he should have been an ardent advocate of the breed. When a young
man he came to Ohio, where he embarked in the Hereford cattle trade. His
father-in-law, Thomas Aston, made the third importation of Hereford cattle
to America in the year 1852. Mr. Morgan came to Marshall county in 1872,
bringing with him some of the descendants of the Aston importation as the
foundation stock of one of the greatest industries that has ever been carried
on in this county. He maintained his herd until 1901, when he retired,
selling his herd to his son-in-law, F. W. Preston, who continued in Morgan's
footsteps. The county is largely indebted to the latter for the permanent
establishment and development of Hereford cattle. He brought such bulls
as "Duke of Edinburg," "Blue Rapids," "Imp. Belmont," "Edmond," "Fancy
Lad," "Conductor," "Sir Robert," tlie great "Silver Lord" and many others.
He al:o imported the cow "Curley," which was one of the most consistent
prize winners of her time.

Among the early breeders Vvas John M. Winters, who started in the busi-
ness in 1876, getting his foundation stock from Hiram Woodard. This herd
is still being maintained and is the property of his son, B. M. Winters.
Another of the early champions of the breed was Charles Scholz, who several
years ago sold his herd to C. A. Stannard. The Brennan Brothers' herd was
another that was established in the late seventies from the old Woodard

Judge W. H. Goodwin established a herd about 1887 and maintained a
high standard of excellence. After his death in 1897 his daughter. Miss
Lou Goodwin, bought a large number of the best producers in the herd and
continued to breed high-class cattle. The foundation stock for a number
of later herds came from Miss Goodwin's stock. Other breeders, who have
been prominent in the Hereford history, are L. W. Libby, G. W. Parrish,


'E. ]\I. AIcAtee. William T. Tanl. T. A. Greenman, F. A. Stocks, William
Bommer, William Acker, Cottrell Brothers, A. B. Bird, Luther Whiting,
G. S. T'jnmert. Charles Strange, W. A. Gilson, S. W. Tilley, J. M. Williams,
Woodman & Son, Ira A. Whiting, C. H. Styles & Company, 1. D. Yarick,
W. IMorgan, E. W^ Ringen, J. L. Rodkey, C. Rodkey, W. B Hunt, A. Borck,
James Hunt, J. F. Sedlacek, James Shaughnessy, J. Pecenka and many
others. At the present time some of these herds have been dispersed, but
others are being improved and extended.

The Marshall County Hereford Breeders Association was organized
about sixteen years ago and held their first sale in 1902 at Blue Rapids. At
one time there were fifty members in the association and their holdings aggre-
gated two thousand five hundred head. In recent years no sales have been
held and the association has almost been lost sight of; but with the increased
demand for high grade cattle, it will probably be reorganized. The splendid
showing of pure-bred cattle at the Marshall County Fair in October, 19 16,
showed, by the number of exhibitors of Herefords, that interest was being


The Shorthorn has had a more checkered career in Marshall county,
and at the present time there are very few herds of pure-bred cattle of this
breed, although there are some small herds starting up. As near as can be
ascertained the iirst pure-bred Shorthorns were brought to the count v by a
Mr. Harbaugh, of Waterville. This was in 1871-72. About the same date
Thompson Smith, of Oketo, and a Air. Tennison, of Frankfort, also haid
herds of Shorthorns.

The most prominent importers of thoroughbred Hplsteins in the county
are the Lackland Brothers, of Axtell.

The most consistent champion of Angus cattle in the county is Charles
Butler, who has been breeding and feeding the Angus breed for a number of
years. E. A. Berry, of Waterville, and George Hall were also breeders of
Angus cattle. George Stephenson, of Waterville, brought the Angus to its
highest state of development in the county. He raised fancy cattle on his
farm near Waterville and maintained a show herd that won many premiums.
There are comparatively few of the Angus cattle here at the present time.

The Galloway is another breed that has not been popular here. The
only herds of which there is any knowledge, are owned by Dr. E. L. Willson,
Sr,, and John Stauffacher.


The Auld Brothers, of Frankfort, are making a specialty of the Red
Polled cattle and are developing a fine herd. They are placing quite a num-
ber of sires in other herds throughout the county.


Until 1884 every farmer's wife kept her own creamery and dairy.
Butter was sold in Marysville at ten cents a pound and less, with a slight
raise in price during the holiday season.

In the spring of 1884 Arand & Ziegler, of Marysville, built the first
creamery in Marshall county. They invested about three thousand dollars
in grounds, building and equipment, located about a quarter of a mile west
of the Blue river bridge, at the foot of the hill. A well was drilled for
artesian water, but at a depth of three hundred and twenty-five feet salt
water was found and the "artesian" well abandoned. This was before
the day of the cream separator, and the firm kept five men with teams,
gathering cream from the farmers.

William Maldoon, now a farmer near Marysville, was the butter-maker.
For two years this creamery turned out an excellent grade of butter, but
the fact that there was no market for the produce nearer than New York,
made the business unprofitable and it was discontinued in 1886. The build-
ings and grounds are now owned by Jacob Grauer.

The creamery business then slept until May 5, 1894, when the Blue
Valley Creamery Company was organized at Marysville by Walker Broth-
ers, of Wichita, Kansas. A special building was erected, the best up-to-
date equipment installed and the business prospered from the begin-
ning. The first year of the operation of the creamery, the company bought
1,909,483 pounds of milk, for which it paid $11,458.57. By 1895 creamery
butter became a factor in the markets of the country and set the price for
farm butter. The price of all butter has been consistently maintained and
increased from that date to the present.

Notwithstanding that Marshall county is pre-eminently an agricultural
county, with practically no other industries, the facts are that the people of
the cities of the county have been obliged to use about as much condensed
milk, the output of factories of New York and Illinois, as they have of native
cow's milk, during the past five years, and have had to pay as high as forty
cents a pound for creamery butter during the holiday season of 19 16. A
large proportion of the butter consumed has to be imported.


The Blue Valley Creamery Company operated here until July 29, 1901.
The Walker Brothers had in the meantime estahlished a branch of the Blue
Valley Creamery in St. Joseph, Missouri, and in 1901 removed to that city
and consolidated the concern.

There is no creamery in the county now, but several dairies are in opera-
tion. There are one thousand four hundred and twenty-nine cream sepa-
rators in the county, and cream to the value of ninety-seven thousand two
hundred and twenty-six dollars was sold to creameries for the year ending
March i, 19 16. Six hundred and fifty pounds of cheese was made and sold in
the county, by individual cheese-makers, there being no cheese factory in the
county. During the same period, three hundred and eighty-two thousand
nine hundred and one pounds of butter-fat have been shipped out of the
county and sold.


The dairy breeds that are the most popular are the Holsteins and
Jerseys. Lackland Brothers, W. O. Morrill, F. E. Austin, Mr. Arnold and
others champion the Holsteins, while the Jerseys are preferred by C. Thomas,
R. O. McKee, George Hall. Joseph Krasney and others. Alfred Sanderson
is the only man in the county who is specializing in Guernseys.

Several years ago large numbers of cattle were fed for the markets.
Among the large feeders were Perry Hutchinson, Patrick Finegan, Charles
Scholz, William Cassidy, Charles Butler, and John Cottrell. Butler and Cot-
trell are still in the business.

One predominant factor in the promotion of the animal industry in the
county has been alfalfa, ever since its introduction. The man who raises
alfalfa, not only makes two blades grow where but one grew before, but
he grows ten, and everyone, green or dry, is a stick of meat and fat for
horse, cow or hog.

To Bernard Nauman, of Frankfort, belongs the credit of having brought
the first alfalfa seed to this county about 1872. It was many years getting
under cultivation, but once fairly started it became the favorite it deserves
to be, and no farmer can "keep house," without it now.

The silo has become a strong ally of alfalfa for dairy and fattening
purposes. It furnishes "canned" green feed of excellent quality to all kinds of
stock at all seasons of the year. Fifty-eight of these feed preserves were
reported in use for the year ending March 31, 19 16, in the county, and in
January, 191 7, the number had been nearly doubled.

Calf prize and exhibit of cona. He also won first state prize at the Kansas State

Agricultural College.


Online LibraryEmma Elizabeth Calderhead FosterHistory of Marshall County, Kansas : its people, industries, and institutions → online text (page 22 of 104)