Emma Elizabeth Calderhead Foster.

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

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in 1 86 1 went to the front with the Michigan Engineer Corps, only to find
a nameless grave on some battlefield of the South. The last heard of Joseph
Warnica was in 1863. He left a widow and seven children. Of these chil-
dren the subject of this sketch was the fourth in order of birth, the others
being as follow : Peter, an early settler in Kansas, who is now living in
Texas; Joseph G., who also enlisted in the Michigan Engineer Corps for
service during the Civil War, went to the front with his father, received
his honorable discharge in 1864, later became a pioneer in Kansas and is
now deceased; Mrs. Melvina Crandall, who died in Colorado in 191 1;
George A., a substantial farmer living near St. Joseph, Missouri; Calvin,
a farmer livmg west of Frankfort in this county, and James, of Junction
City, Kansas. In 1873 the Widow Warnica left her home in Michigan and
came to Kansas, taking a homestead five miles west of Erankfort, in this
county, where she spent her last days with her three youngest children, her
death occurring there in 1876.

In 1869, some little time before his twenty-first birthday, William D.
Warnica came to Kansas with a view to finding a home in the then rapidly
developing state. He found conditions in Marshall county to his liking
and homesteaded an "eighty" in Wells township, four miles west of Frank-
fort. At that time he liad very little money and the beginning of his oper-
ations there was on a very modest scale. He put up a log "shack," twelve
feet square, for a claim shanty and started in developing his homestead.
In 1872 he married and established his home on that tract, gradually con-
tinuing to develop and improve the same until he had an excellent farm.
Though, in common with all the settlers throughout this part of the state,
he suffered many hardships and privations during the days of the grass-
hopper plague and the destroying hot winds, he had the courage to "stick
it out" and in time was amply rewarded. As he prospered in his operations
Mr. Warnica gradually added to his land holdings until he became the
owner of a fine farm of two hundred and forty acres, on which he erected
a substantial and commodious dwelling and good farm outbuildings, hav-
ing one of the best-a])pointed farm plants in that part of the county. There
he made his home until 1907, when he retired from the active labors of the
farm and moved to Frankfort, where he is now living and where he and
his wife are very comfortably situated.

Mr. Warnica has been twice married. It was in 1873, about four years


after coming to iliis county, that he was united in marriage to Hannah
Osborn. who was l)()rn in Illinois, daughter of Robert Osborn, who came
to Kansas in iHOj. and to that union four children were born, namely:
LeRoy, a farmer of Wells township, this county, who married Florence
Ettenboro, a daughter of ("liarles Ettenboro, and has five children, Thelma,
Everett, Wayne. Mar\in and l""reda ; Alfonso, a clerk in a hardw^are store
in Montana, who married luniice Rogers and has one child, a son, Earl;
Bessie, who married Wilbur [. I>and. who is farming the Warnica home
farm in Wells township, and has three children, Vernon, Fletcher and
Geneva, and Robert, also farming in ^^"ells township, who married Edna
McConkey and has two children, Evelyn and Etta May. The mother of
these children died in December, 19 lo, at the age of fifty-six years, and in
Noveml)er, 1914. Mr. Warnica married Mrs. Mary E. (McElroy) McLain,
widow of Lloyd McLain, a farmer, merchant and former postmaster of
Frankfort, and a daughter of Benjamin and Mary (Thomas) McElroy,
who came to Kansas from Wisconsin in 1856 and homesteaded a place in
Vermillion township, this county, thus having been among the very earliest
settlers in that part of the county. Benjamin McElroy was a veteran of
the Civil War, having served as a private in Company G. Thirteenth Regi-
ment, Kansas Volunteer Infantry, in wh.ich he enlisted in 1862 and with
which he served until discharged on a physician's certificate of disability,
his service having been rendered in Arkansas and Missouri, serving under
Captain Blackburn. Upon settling on his homestead farm one and one-half
miles west of where the city of Frankfort later sprang up, Mr. McElroy put
up a log cabin and established his home there. His wife died the year fol-
lowing, in 1857, and he continued to make his home there until 1875, wdien
he moved to Frankfort, where he died in 1894. Mrs. Warnica was but six
months old when her parents came to this county and was still but an infant
when her mother died. She has an elder sister, Mrs. Ann J. Rountree,
now living in western Kansas.

Mr. ^^^arnica is a Republican and during his long residence on the
farm in W'ells township held various township offices, having been a mem-
ber of the tow^nship board for thirteen years and holding the position of
clerk and treasurer of the same. In other ways he gave of his services to
the public w'elfare and w^as helpful in promoting the interests of his home
towaiship from pioneer days. Mr. Warnica is a Mason and a member of
the local lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and of the Daugh-
ters of Rebekah. Mrs. Warnica also is a member of the latter order and of
the local chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star and both take a warm


interest in Masonic affairs and in the affairs of the Odd " Fellows. Both
have l^een witnesses to the development of Marshall county from the days
of the unhroken prairie and the open range and have performed well their
part in that development, ever helpful in promoting such causes as were
designed to advance the common welfare.


When the name of Wells is mentioned in Marshall county memories
of the pioneer John D. Wells, father of the subject of this biographical
sketch, inevitably are aroused. Jolin D. Wells was one of the first, as he
was one of the most active of the early settlers of Marshall county and it
is said of him that he at one time owned nearly half of the county. A Ken-
tuckian by birth, he went to Iowa from that state, but after a year spent in
the vicinity of Des Moines decided that the opportunities for pioneering
were better down here in Kansas and he drove down with an ox team in
the year 1855 and "pitched his tent" in section 36 of township 4, south,
range 8, east, where he bought a tract of "Congress land" and established
his home. That was in the days before the organization of Marshall county
into a civic entity and before the days of the admission of Kansas into the
sisterhood of states. When his home township was organized, Mr. Wells
took an active part in the work of organization and his pioneer neighbors
were glad to do him the honor of naming the township for him. In the
general historv of the early settlement of this county further and fitting
mention is made of the services of John D. Wells in the community in
pioneer days and of his activities in a general way in the development of
the county. Not only did he go into land speculation on an extensive scale,
buying land for from one dollar to two dollars an acre, until at one time
he owned nearly half of Marshall county, but he engaged in the freighting
business, operating a train of teams over the Overland trail to Denver,
and thus became one of the best-known figures on the plains throughout
this section in those days. He went into the business of raising hogs and
in order to secure advantage of the better market Denver then offered over
the markets to the East, he would drive his hogs all the long drive to Den-
ver, the trip requiring sixty days to complete. He owned six hundred
acres of land in his home place and there early engaged extensively in cattle
raising, thus being one of the first big cattlemen in Kansas, and did much


to promote the calllc business in ncHlliern Kansas in llie days of the open
range. He lived to near the allotted age <if man, "three score years and
ten," and to the day of his death maintained his hearty interest in the afTairs
of the county, in the organization and development of which he had taken
so active a part.

John D. Wells was horn in Bath county, Kentucky, October 9, 1830,
and there grew to manhood. He married Elizabeth Langdon, who was
born in 1829 not far to the north, over the riveV in Ohio, and in 1854, he
then being twenty-four years of age, he and his wife went to Iowa seeking
a location in the West. As noted above, after a year spent in the vicinity
of Des Moines, they came down into Kansas in 1855 and the rest of their
lives were spent in Marshall county, their lives here being a definite part
of the early history of this county. John D. \Vells was a member of the
Masonic lodge at Frankfort and ever took an active interest in the affairs
of the same. He died on March 19, 1899, ^^^^ ^^is widow did not long
survive him, her death occurring on April 3, 1900. They were the parents
of ten children, three of w^hom died in infancy, the others, besides the sub-
ject of this sketch, being as follow : Mary P., w^ho married James M. Wells
and died in 1881 ; Amanda M., who is living on the old home place in
Wells township; Artie Belle, wife of L. Bennett, also of Wells township;
Veda J., wife of J. L. McConchie, also of Wells township; Robert J., of
Bigelow township, and Anna F., who married Daniel Pendergast and is
living in Wells township.

Oliver C. Wells, fourth in order of birth of the ten children born to
John D. and Elizabeth (Langdon) Wells, was born on the old Wells place
in Wells township, September 8, 1862, and has made his home in this county
all his life, now being engaged in the grain and coal business at Barrett.
He also is the owner of an excellent farm in this county and a property
consisting of eight acres in the village of Barrett, w'here he makes his home.
Reared on the home farm, Oliver C. Wells received his schooling in the old
Valley View school, district No. 32, and remained on the home place until
his marriage, a valuable aid to his father in the latter's extensive operations.
Even in the days of his boyhood Mr. Wells made a good "hand" in the
operations of the home farm and was able to handle an ox-team wdth the
best. Along in the middle eighties he bought his first land, a tract of forty
acres, and to that he gradually added until he became the owner of two
hundred acres, to w'hich another tract of seventy-one acres was added upon
the distribution of his father's estate. In 1910 he sold his land holdings,
but bought another farm and continued farming until 191 2, wdien he moved


to Barrett, where, in 19 14. he bought the grain elevator there and has since
then been engaged in the grain and coal business, at the same time giving
proper attention to the management of his farm of one hundred and forty-
five acres lying in section 35 of Wells township and in the adjoining section
2 of Bigelow township. Mr. Wells is a Democrat and has rendered public
service as a member of the school board in his old home district and as
deputy sheriff of Marshall county, in which latter capacity he served for
three years. He is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen
and in the affairs of that fraternal organization has long taken a warm in-

In 1893 Oliver C. Wells was united in marriage to Helen Warren,
who was born in Bath county, Kentucky, August 25, 1873, daughter of
Martin V. and Margaret (Jackson) Warren, both natives of that same
county, who came to Kansas in 1892 and settled in this county, where they
spent their last days. To Mr. and Mrs. Wells six children have been born,
the first-born dying in infancy, the others being as follow : Bessie, de-
ceased ; Anna V., who married Richard Fairchild and is living at Barrett,
and Marguerite, Elizabeth and Mark, at home. The Wells family have
a very pleasant home at Barrett and take a proper part in the general social
activities of the village and of the community at large.


One of the w^ll-known men of Summerfield and one who has had much
to do with the moral and the religious life of the community, is Rev. Edward
R. Embleau, who is the pastor of the "Holy Family" parish of Summerfield,
Marshall county, and who was born in Leavenworth, Kansas, on August 14,
1887, the son of Philip and Catherine (Long) Embleau.

Philip Embleau was born in Montreal, Canada, in 1863, the son of
Joseph and Josephine Embleau, who were natives of France, where they
received their education in the parochial schools and there grew up. They
later left their native land and came to Canada, locating in Montreal, where
the father, Philip Embleau continued his work as a stove moulder for a
number of years. He later moved to Leavenworth, and continued in the
same work until 1904, when he moved to Hannibal, Missouri, where he is
still engaged in the moulding business. Catherine (Long) Embleau was
born in the city of Washington, D. C, in 1865, and is the daughter of


Michael and Mary Lont,^ who were natives of Ireland. Mr. and Mrs. Long
received their education in the scIkioIs of their native land and there grew
to niaturit\- and later came to the United States, locating for a time in Wash-
ington and later came to Kansas, settling in Leavenworth, where Mr. Long
engaged in his wdrk as a stone niasnn inilil the time of his death, some years

Philip and Catherine (Long) Emhleau were the parents of four children
as follow : Alfred, Edward, Stella and Joseph. Alfred and Stella are now
deceased and Joseph is a manufacturer of hrooms at Topeka, Kansas. The
parents were prominent members of the Catholic church and were held in
tlie highest regard and esteem by all who knew them. They were ever inter-
ested in the educational development of their home community, and were
most devoted to the interests of their children.

Edward R. Embleau received his education in St. Benedict's College,
from which institution he graduated in the year 1907. He later completed
the course in the seminary at St. Mary's, Cincinnati, and received his degree
on June i, 191 1. After completing his education, his first appointment was
as assistant priest of the Assumption church at Topeka, Kansas, where he
remained for three and a half years. He was then transferred to the church
at Coal Creek, Kansas, where he remained for one year before taking charge
of the Holy Family church at Summerfield. As pastor of the church at Sum-
merfield, Reverend Embleau has won many friends during his two years
pastorate, both among the members of his congregation and the residents of
the community. He is a man of much force of character, a splendid organ-
izer and an orator of no mean ability. ■


Rezin Clark, one of Marshall county's real pioneer farmers and land-
owners, now living retired at Frankfort, is a native of the old Buckeye state,
but has been a resident of Kansas since he was nineteen years of age, having
been one of that stalwart and courageous band of young men who came out
here in the early seventies and started in to develop the plains of Kansas into
the rich and prosperous farming region it since has become. He was born
on a farm in Allen county, Ohio, March 24', 1852, a son of John and Lucinda
(Jennings) Clark, the former of whom was born in Ireland and the latter in
the state of Ohio.


In 1 87 1 Rezin Clark came to Kansas and settled in Marshall county,
presently becoming the owner of a tract of land where the village of Winifred
now stands. After his marriage in 1873 ^^^- Clark established his home
on that farm and there remained for fifteen years, at the end of which time
he moved to Frankfort, in order to secure better advantages in the way of
schooling for his children, and later returned to the farm, where he continued
to make his home until his retirement from the active labors of the farm
in 191 5 and return to Frankfort, where he is now living and where he and
family are very comfortably situated. Mr. Clark has prospered well in his
farming operations in this county and is now the owner of two fine farms,
one of three hundred and sixty acres at Winifred and another of two hundred
and seventy-four acres in the immediate vicinity of Frankfort. Mr. Clark is
a Democrat and has ever given a good citizen's attention to local civic
affairs, but has not been a seeker after public office.

In 1873. about two years after coming to this county, Rezin Clark
was united in marriage to Cora Jane Ewart, who was born in Scotland on
August 24, 1855, a daughter of Thomas and Jane (Woods) Ewart, who
came to this country in 1870 and settled on a farm five miles west of Frank-
fort, in this county, thus having been among the earliest settlers of that part
of the county. Mrs. Clark's maternal grandparents, William and Jane
(Clark) Woods, also came to this country from Scotland in 1870 and settled
in this county, among the pioneers of the south central part of the county.

To Rezin and Cora Jane (Ewart) Clark five children have been born,
namely: Alvin, who is engaged in the drug business at St. Joseph, Missouri;
Warren, a druggist, of Chicago; Charles, of Oklahoma City, who in 1916, as
a member of the United States Cavalry, stationed in Oklahoma, was engaged
in service on the Southern border as a guard against threatened outbreaks
on the part of lawless Mexicans; Clara, who married T. H. Farrar and is
now living on the old Woods homestead west of Frankfort, and Mrs. Elsie
Havely, who is at home with her parents. Air. and Mrs. Clark have seven
grandchildren, Alvin Clark having three children, Alvin, Jr., Elsie Lela and
Emma Rogene ; Mrs. Farrar, two children, Otis Charles and Margaret Holli-
day, and Mrs. Havely, two, Warren Okley and Marjorie Lorraine. The
Clarks are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and have ever taken
a proper part in church work. Mr. Clark is a member of the Knights and
Ladies of Security, as is his wife, and the latter also is a member of the local
chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star and of the Woman's Relief Corps,
in the affairs of which she takes a warm interest. Mr. Clark is a great agi-


tator. He and Rev. Hokomb were the first to close the saloons in Frankfort,
Kansas. Frankfort was the first town closed in Marshall county in 1903,
and that was the start of the state going dry. Mr. Clark is a very earnest
man and believes he did the right thing.


The late Clement Theodore Elessel. for years one of the best-known
and most substantial farmers in the immediate vicinity of Frankfort, this
county, and who died at his home on the east edge of that city on July 15,
1906. was a native of the state of Wisconsin, born at Watertown, that state,
April 20, 1848, a son of Clement Hessel and wife, the former of whom was
born in Germany of French parentage. In his young manhood Clement T.
Hessel came to Kansas and became a stock buyer at Atchison, traveling
out of there to all parts of the country adjacent to that market, buying live-
stock. Before coming to Kansas, Mr. Hessel had married in Wisconsin,
Mary Lynch, of Columbus, that state, and who became ill at her home in
Atchison. He accompanied her back to her old home at Columbus, where
she died, leaving one child, a son, Frank, who is now living in the West.

l^ater Mr. Hessel returned to Kansas and eventually came to Marshall
county, locating at Frankfort, wdiere, on January 7, 1890, he married Jo-
hanna Fox, who was born at Brandy wine, Pennsylvania, July 27, 1859, a
daughter of Richard and Johanna (Kellar) Fox, natives of Ireland, who
came to this country in the days of their youth and were married at Brandy-
wine, Pennsylvania. In 1881 the Fox family came to Kansas and settled
on a farm in the northwest corner of Vermillion township, this county, where
they established their home, and where Mr. Fox spent his last days, his
death occurring on September 25, 1903. He was born on September 21,
1838, and was therefore just past se^-enty-five years of age at the time of
his death. His widow later moved to Frankfort, where she spent her last
days, her death occurring on March 8, 191 5. She was born in the vear 1832
and was therefore eighty-three years of age at the time of her death. Richard
Fox and his wife were the parents of six children, of whom Mrs. Hessel
was the second in order of birth, the others being as follow : Richard, who
was a railroad man and who died at his home in Atchison in 1904; Mrs.
Charles Brady, who lived on a farm on Irish creek in this county, is now
deceased ; Humphrey, who lives at Frankfort ; Julia, now employed at the


Odd Fellow Home, who has proved up on a homestead claim in the vicinity
of Chugwater, in Laramie county, Wyoming, and Thomas, who is farming
the old Fox home place in the northwest corner of Vermillion township.

After their marriage Air. and Mrs. Hessel rented a quarter-section farm
on the eastern edge of Frankfort, w'here they established their home, and
six months later bought the place. There Mr. Hessel continued farming
until his death in 1906. He made extensive improvements on the place and
his family now has a splendid home there, having continued to make that
their place of residence since his death. Mr. Hessel was a very energetic
and progressive farmer, his operations being carried on in accordance with
modern methods of farming, and he did very well, so that his family was
left quite well circumstanced at the time of his death. Fie was a member
of the Catholic church, as is his widow, and their children have been reared
in that faith.

To Clement T. and Johanna (Fox) Hessel four children were born,
namely: Clement Joseph, born on May 14, 1894, who is a graduate of the
high school at Frankfort; Anna Regina, who on February 8, 191 1, married
John Thomas Ahern, of this county, and has two children, Eugene Arthur,
born on September 19, 1913, and Justin Hessel, May 19, 1916; William
Richard, born on November 7, 1895, who was graduated from the Frank-
fort high school, and Arthur Gerald, December 16, 1899, who also is a
graduate of the Frankfort high school. Mrs. Hessel has a very pleasant
home on the outskirts of Frankfort and has ever taken a proper part in the
general social activities of the community of which she has been a member
since the days of her young womanhood.


The late Michael Joseph Duigenan, of Marysville, one of the pioneers
of Marshall county and for many years one of the wealthiest and most
influential residents of the county, was a native of the Emerald Isle, but
had been a resident of this county since 1870 and had therefore witnessed
the development of this region since the days of the early settlement of
the same. He was born in the city of Dublin, Ireland, in November, 1842,
of Irish parents, but was reared in London, to which, city his parents had
moved when he was a child. He lost his parents in the days of his youth
and he later went to South America, making his home in the city of Buenos


Ayres for some time, later cinniiii; to the Inited States and settling" at
Chieago. where he remained until he eame to Kansas in 1870 and located at
Marysville. with the interests of whieh city and of Marshall county he was
actively' and prominently identified the rest of his life.

During" his boxhocul in London .Mr. Dnigenan had learned the trade
of saddler and harness-maker and had worked at that trade both in Bueno.s
Ayres and in Chicago. I'lnm locating at Marysville he bought the harness
shop that had been established there by Nierman & Switzer and at once
engaged in 1)usiness, e\entually becoming very successful. Mr. Duigenaii
had the utmost confidence in the future of Marysville from the very be-
ginning of his residence there and shortly after his arrival there made con-
siderable investi"nents in town lots, which turned out very well. Upon his
marriage two years later he built a handsome residence in Marysville and
there established his home, making that his place of residence the rest of
his life. He rapidly extended the business of his harness shop and presently
had (jne of the most extensive establishments of that sort in northern Kan-
sas. At the sai"ne time he was niaking judicious investments in Marshall
county farm lands and it was not long until he came to be regarded as one
of the wealthiest and most substantial citizens of the county. At one time
he oW'Ued five or six farms in this county and went in quite extensively for

Online LibraryEmma Elizabeth Calderhead FosterHistory of Marshall County, Kansas : its people, industries, and institutions → online text (page 52 of 104)