Emma Elizabeth Calderhead Foster.

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

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the age of twenty years he left his native land and came to America. On
his arrival in the United States he came direct to Kansas and located on a
farm in Washington county, where he died at the age of seventy-two years.
To Mr. and Mrs. Henry has been born one child, Helen Davene, now a girl
of five years. Mr. and Mrs. Henry are active members of the United Presby-
terian church and are prominent in the social life of their home city, where
they are held in the highest regard and esteem by all who know them.

Politically, Mr. Henry is identified with the Republican party, and has
always taken a keen interest in local afifairs, and is at present the efficient
city clerk. He is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, the
Order of the Eastern Star, the Knights of Pythias and the Ancient Order
of United Workmen. He is the distributor of the "Indigent Vaccine" for St.
Bridget and Richland townships and is local register of the births and deaths.
He has always been much interested in the educational progress of the city


and in aclcHno^ to its beauty and ^rowtli. Tie had much to do with the seven-
thoiisand-five-liundred-dollar addition to the school house. He won the five-
dollar prize of Doctor Stephens for producing the best growth in five elm
trees within a year.


Of the well known farmers and stockmen of Balderson township, Mar-
shall count) , who were l;orn in Germany may be mentioned Karl Hohn, who
was l)orn by Koelnam Ivhein, on June 12, 1852, and is the son of John W.
and Regina (Oehm) Hohn.

John W. and Regina Oehm were also natives of Germany, in which
country they uere educated and were later married. John W. Hohn was
born in 1827 and his wife in 1828. After their marriage they continued to
make their home in Germany until 1869, when they came to the United
States. John W. Hohn was reared on a farm and engaged in that work in
his native land, and when he came to Marshall county, he continued in that
work. He purchased the farm where his son, Karl, now lives and made
all the improvements, including the stone house and barn. The stone for
these structures he quarried from his farm. He developed the farm and
became one of the substantial farmers of the township. Mr. Hohn con-
tinued to live on the old home place until 1890, when he returned to his native
land, where he died in 1900. The wife and mother died on October 18,

John W. and Regina Hohn were active members of the Evangelical
church and took much interest in all the services of the church and were
jrfominent in the social life of the township. They were the parents of the
following children : Karl, Bertha and Amelia. Bertha is the wife of C.
Schaeer, of Superior, Nebraska, and .\melia was the wife of D. Breunsbach.
Her death occurred some years ago.

Karl Hohn was educated in Germany and remained there until he was
seventeen years of age. He came with his parents to America and located
in Balderson townshin, A'larshall countv, and here he entered school but was
unable to attend longer than eighteen days. Being the eldest child he was in
a position to assist his father in the cultivation of the farm, and remained
with him until he returned to Germany. Karl Hohn then purchased the
farm and since that time has been engaged in general farming and stock
raising. He experienced many of the hardships of the early pioneer; yet


with the determination to succeed he is now one of the substantial men of
the township. He sold corn at thirteen cents per bushel, and has even hauled
it to Marysville, when it was a task to get rid of it at any price. He has
taken wheat to Frankfort, Kansas, twenty-five miles distant, and sold it for
thirty-five cents per bushel. To make this trip he would start at eleven
o'clock at night, so as to be at the market early in the morning. Those were
most tr3'ing times, and a load of wheat would bring but a few dollars.

The first house on the place, built by his father, was of logs, the timber
being obtained from the home farm. In 1880 the present stone house was
erected. It required many days of hard work for the father and son to
quarry the stone, dress and jilace them in the building. The placing of the
stone in the building was left to Karl Hohn, and the evidence of his good
work is seen in the splendid condition of the building today. There were
many Indians in the county at the time the family made their settlement
there, yet they were always friendly to the Hohn family. Many times, when
in the woods or fields about his work, or on the hillside picking berries, Karl
Hohn would meet a band of Indians, and while he was many times fright-
ened, he was never in any way hurt. He has been driven from the berry
patch by them, with the claim that the berries belonged to them and later he
became aware that it was all a joke. These little incidents had much to do
vv'ith cementing the friendship of the red men and the whites in this section
of the state.

On November 15, 1880, Karl Hohn was united in marriage to Amelia
Bruensbach, who was born on September 12, 1862, in the state of Illinois,
and later came to Kansas, where she died on February 15, 1901. She was
a member of the Evangelical church. To that union the following children ,
were born : Lena, Bertha, Amelia, Emil, Emma, Anna and Rudy. Lena
Rohtenberger is now a resident of Baldenson township, where her husband
is a farmer; Bertha is the wife of John Grauer, a resident of Marysville;
Amelia is the wife of Frank Kratch, of Balderson ; Emma Zeibach resides
near Steel City, Nebraska, and Anna Rudy are at home with the father.

Karl Hohn is an active member of the Evangelical church and is prom-
inent in the social life of the township. He has always taken much interest
in the services of the church and is one of the highly respected men of the
comniunitv. Politically, he is identified with the Republican party and has
had much to do with the civic life of the township and served for a number
of vears as treasurer. He is a strong advocate of better schools and good
roads. On Januarv 12. 19 10. Mr. Hohn married for his second wife, Mrs.
Sophia Kratch, a daughter of Fritz and Kathrin (Freese) Meier, of Mis-


soiiri. where they were faniiiiii^ [jeople, both being now deceased. Mrs.
Hohn. In" her first marriage, was the mother of the following children:
Frank, Rudolph. Alma and Fred, all of whom are married and living in
Balderson township, this county.


Sterling Keck, one of the prominent residents of Summerfield, Mar-
shall county, and now living a retired life, was born in Claiborne county,
Tennessee, on September 9, 1845, the son of Philip and Rachel (Goin) Keck.

Philip Keck was born in Pennsylvania and was the son of John and
Anna ( Hansley ) Keck, both of whom were natives of the state of Pennsyl-
vania, and where the fatlier was engaged in farming. John Keck was the
son of Conrad Keck and wife, also natives of that state. The families later
moved to Tennessee and there John Keck died in 1859. Philip Keck after
moving to Tennessee became the owner of a large plantation consisting of
over three hundred acres of land. It was there that he died in 1880 at the
dge of eighty-five years. Rachel (Goin) Keck, the mother of Sterling Keck,
was born in Tennessee in 18 16. She was the daughter of Uriah Goin. She
grew to womanhood in home state and there lived her life, her death having
occurred some years ago.

Sterling Keck received his education in the common schools of his native
state and there grew to manhood on the home plantation. At the age of
seventeen vears he enlisted in the Union army, and served in Battery B, First
Tennessee Light Artillery, and saw much active service in and about
Xicholasville, Kentucky. He was in the Twenty-third Army Corps and did
good service for two and a half years. After the close of the war he returned
to his home and engaged in teaching, and w^as for four years one of the suc-
cessful teachers of his staite. He then retired from the work as a teacher
and engaged in farming on his tract of land for fifteen years. In 1879 he
left Tennessee and went to Gage county, Nebraska, where he purchased
eighty acres of land at twelve dollars per acre. He held this land for a
time, when he traded it for land in Thomas county, Kansas. In 1890 he
left Nebraska and came to Marshall county, where he purchased one hun-
dred and sixty acres of land in section 24, Balderson township. The place
was partially developed and had some improvements. He later built a fine
eight-room house and made other extensive improvements. Here he engaged


in general farming and stock raising with much success for the next eighteen
years, when in 1909 lie retired from the active duties of farm hfe and moved
to Summerfield. Here he has a beautiful modern house and six acres of
land. The land is just across the line in Nebraska.

While actively engaged in farm work, Mr. Keck was an extensive raiser
of cattle, and each year had ready for the market some two hundred head.
He was the largest hog raiser in Balderson township. He was also a dealer
in mules and each year he shipped large numbers of these animals to the
various markets of the country. As a business man and farmer he demon-
trated his ability to handle matters of large proportions.

Sterling Keck was twice married. His first wnfe was Harriet Har-
man. whom he married on October 18, r866. She was born in Tennessee
in 1848 and died on July 13, 1908. To this union the following children
have been born : Roxie Ann, Clarcie, Lucretia, Emeline, James William,
Melvin, Belle, Josephine, Proctor, Bert, John, Eva, Iva and one that died
in infancy. Roxie Ann is the wife of William Wymore, of Portland,
Oregon, and to them have been born five children ; Clarcie Brown lives in
Montana, where Mr. Brown is engaged in farming; Lucretia, now deceased,
was the wife of James McMahan ; Emeline is the wife of L. McMahan and
they reside in California; James William resides in Montana; Melvin is
farming on the home place; Belle is the wife of L. Vanortwick, a farmer of
Richland township: Josephine Arnold resides in California; Proctor L. is a
farmer of Richland township ; Bert lives in California ; John is a resident
of Montana ; Eva Eralin resides in Richland township, where Mv. Fralin is
engaged in farming and Iva is now deceased.

In 1909 Mr. Keck was united in marriage to Mrs. Maggie Munday,
who was born in Tennessee on May 27, 1881, where she grew to womanhood
and was united in marriage to Oscar Munday, by whom she is the mother of
two children, Nellie and Claud, both of whom are at home. Mrs. Keck is
the daughter of William and Sallie (Lane) Munday, natives of Tennessee.

Soon after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Munday came to Marshall
county and established their home in section 19, Richland townshipr, in 1902.
Oscar Munday engaged in general farming and stock raising for a number
of years and met with much success, in his chosen work. He and his wife
were among the prominent people of the community and were active in the
social life of the district. Some years after the death of her husband, Mrs.
Munday became the wife of Sterling Keck, and since their marriage have
lived in their beautiful home in Summerfield.

At the time Sterling and Harriet Keck left Tennessee to establish a new


home in Gage county, Nebraska, they were the parents of six girls and eight
sons. With his wife and large family of children, Mr. Keck landed in Gage
county with but twenty-five dollars in money. The long and difficult jour-
ney was made with horses and covered wagons, and in the party that came
at that time there were eight wagons and forty-two people. The trip occu-
pied forty-two days, and was fraught with many hardships and dangers.
The roads were but trails and there were few, if any, bridges spanning the
creeks and rivers.


Constand Claeys, one of the well-known and prominent men of Marys-
ville township, Marshall county, was born in Belgium on April 9, 1870,
the son of Celestine and Caroline (Cambrell) Claeys.

Celestine and Caroline Claeys were natives of Belgium and there re-
ceived their education, grew to maturity and were later married. After
their marriage they established their home in Belgium and there they spent
the rest of their lives. The father was born in 1834 and the mother in
1838. the former died in the land where he was born on January 16, 1915,
and the mother died in the land of her nativity in 1877. Mr. and Mrs.
Claeys were devout members of the Catholic church and prominent in the
local society of their home community. They were the parents of ten
children, six of whom died in infancy; the four now living are Flormari,
Lena, Constand and Celina. Florman lives at Axtell, Kansas; he is a
farmer and stockman; Lena Von De Rostine is a resident of Atchinson,
Illinois, where Mr. Von De Rostine is engaged in farming and stock rais-
ing; Constand is the subject of this sketch and Celina Busie is still a resi-
dent of the home country.

Constand Claeys received his education in the schools of Belgium. He
immigrated to the United States in April, 1889. Following his arrival in
this country he started in to work for himself and sought employment in
a brick yard, after he had located at Beatrice, Nebraska. Here he remained
for ten years, when he came to ^Marshall county, in 1900, and here he started
a yard of his own at Marysville, which he operated until 191 1. He then
disposed of his business and rented a farm near Marysville, where he lived
for four years, after which he rented one hundred and sixty acres, near his
former location, and here is still living. He is engaged in general farming
and stock raising, being particularly interested in the breeding and the


raising of Shorthorn cattle and Poland China hogs, and is now preparing
to raise a high grade of Hampshire hogs.

In 1899 Constand Claeys was united in marriage to Antonia Peter, the
daughter of Walter and Barbara (Shoemaker) Peter. Mr. and Mrs. Peter
were natives of Switzerland and there received their education, grew up
and were later married. The father was born in 1847 '^'^d the mother in
1849. While living in his native land Mr. Peter was employed at all kinds
of work, especially at the building of brick ovens in residences. He and
his wife continued to live in their native land until 1883, when 'they came to
the United States and established their home on a rented farm in Nebraska,
where they lived until 1905, when they took a homestead in South Dakota.
The wife and mother died in 1887. After a residence of some eighteen
months in South Dakota, Mr. Peters returned to Switzerland on a visit
and there he died. He and Mrs. Peters were devout members of the Cath-
olic church and highly respected people. Mr. Peter was an active member
of the Democratic party and always took much interest in local affairs. Mr.
and Mrs. Peters were the parents of the following children : Antonia, Ar-
nold, Fredia, Walter, Louise, Warner, Lena, Ralph, Amelia and Barbara.
Antonia is the wife of Constand Claeys; Arnold, a carpenter, is a resident
of the state of Iowa; Freda Moshell resides at Lincoln, Nebraska, her hus-
band being a traveling man ; Walter is engaged in farming on the old home-
stead in South Dakota ; Louise Misery lives in .South Dakota, and is now a
widow, her husband, who was a telegraph operator, died some years ago;
Warner is a farmer in South Dakota ; Lena Kemper lives in Nebraska,
where her husband is a carpenter ; Ralph is a carpenter in Iowa ; Amelia
Kennedy resides at Dorchester, Nebraska, where Mr. Kennedy is engaged in
the carpenter work and as a contractor, and Barbara Hire, who was the
second born of the family, is the wife of Mr. Hire, who lives at Franklin,
Nebraska, and is one of the farmers and stock men of that section.

Antonia (Peter) Claeys was born in Switzerland on March 4, 1872,
and was reared in a village and received her education in one of the schools
of that country. At the age of eleven years she came to the United States
with her parents, and with them located on a farm in Nebraska. There
she grew to womanhood and was later married. She and her husband, Mr.
Claeys were for long years devout members of the Catholic church, and
Mrs. Claeys was an active member of the altar society until the time of
her death in 1905. She was a woman who was held in the highest regard
and at her death the community lost one who was ever ready and willing
to assist in trouble and in sickness. She and Mr. Claeys were the parents


of the folUnvino- children: Louis, lx)rn on November 6, 1899; Agnes, De-
cember 10. 1900; Siisana, Semtember 11, 1903; and Barbara, February
_'i. 1905. These chil(h-cn arc now all at home with the father and all have
been confirmed in the church of their father and mother. With their father,
they are held in high regard by the people of the district in which they live
and where they take an active interest in the social life as well as the re-
ligious life of their church.


Among the successful farmers and stockmen of Richland township,
Marshall county, may l)e included John F. Wagner, the owner of one
hundred and sixty acres of splendid land, and at present operating three
hundred and twenty acres, Avho was born in Franklin county, Indiana, on
May 22, 1877, the son of Jacob and Eliza (Cruse) Wagner.

Jacob Wagner was a native of Germany, and there he received his
education in the schools and grew to manhood. His early life was spent
on a farm, and as a young man he decided that he would be a farmer.
Feeling that he would have better opportunities to obtain a home and a
farm he came to the United States and at once proceeded to Indiana, locat-
ing in Franklin county. In that state he w^as married to Eliza Cruse, w^ho
was born in Indiana in 1840. After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Wagner
established their home in Franklin county, where they resided until 1880,
w"hen they came to Kansas. Here Mr. Wagner purchased a farm of two
hundred and forty acres of splendid land, which is now owned by the son,
Louis J. This farm he developed from the unbroken prairie into one of
the model farms of the county. After four years of active life on his new
farm he died in 1884. The widow is now living a retired life at Summer-
field. They were the parents of the following children: Harry, Louis J.,
Charles P., John F., Edward and William C. Harry is deceased; Charles
P. is a farmer and stockman in Richland township; William C. is a jew^eler
at Sapulpa. Oklahoma, and Edward is a resident of Summerfield.

Jacob Wagner was tw;ice married. To the union before he married
Eliza Cruse were born three children as follow : Todd, who is a resident
of Des Moines, Iowa; Katherine Mertes, a resident of California, and Addie
Poffinbarger, who lives near Fairbury, Nebraska.

John F. Wagner was three years old wdien his parents left their home


in Indiana and came to Kansas. Here he received his education in the
public schools and remained at home until he was twenty-one years of age.
lie then rented land where he engaged in general farming until 1907, when
he purchased his present farm of one hundred and sixty acres of land in
section 33, Richland township, where he has erected the best of modern
buildings and today has one of the best country homes in the county. He
is a progressive farmer and an excellent stockman, and his farm and stock
show the results of care and attention.

John F. Wagner was united in marriage on February 24, 1903, to
Lillie M. Heiserman, who was born in Marshall county on November 16,
1884, the daughter of Fred and Mary (Hunt) Heiserman. Mr. Heiserman
was born in Germany on January 25, 1834, and is the son of Jacob Heiser-
man and wife, who spent their lives in the fatherland. Fred Heiserman
was reared in Germany and there received his education in the public
schools. At the age of twenty-one years he came to America* On his
arrival in the United States in 1855, he at once proceeded to Illinois, where
he engaged as a farm hand for some years. There he was married to
Mary Hunt, who was born in 1847 ^^^^ ^^^^ i^"* 1906. In 1868 Mr. and
Mrs. Heiserman came to Kansas, having made the journey with horses
and wagon from the home in Illinois. They homesteaded eighty acres of
land in Richland township, Marshall county, which they later developed
and improved and in time became the owners of two hundred and forty
acres of the best land. They were the parents of the following children :
Henry, of Liberty, Nebraska; William, of Oklahoma; Jacob, of Norton
county, Kansas; George, a well-known farmer of Balderson township,
Marshall county; John, of Oklahoma; Fred, of Smith county, Kansas;
Charles, of Richland township; Albert, on the home farm; Walter, a farmer
of Marshall county; Edward, of Balderson township; Anna, the wife of Ed
Ringen, of Richland township, a prosperous farmer and stockman; Rose,
the wife of William Ringen. a well-known farmer, and Lillie, the wife of
John F. Wagner.

John F. and Lillie Wagner are among the prominent residents of Rich-
land township and are held in high regard. They are the parents of two
children, Clifford A. and Viola I. They take the keenest pleasure in their
beautiful home with their children, and one of their greatest pleasures is
the entertainment of their neighbors and their friends. Mrs. Wagner has
spent her life in the county where she now lives, where she has ever taken
much interest in church work and the social activities of the community.



Politicallv. Mr. Wagner is identified with the RepubHcan party and has
always taken considerable interest in the civic affairs of the township. He is
now serving as township clerk, having been first elected in 1908. He is also
a member of the school board of district No. 136 and is treasurer of the
board. Both he and his wife have always taken much interest in the edu-
cational development of the county, and any movement for better schools
alwavs receives their hearty approval. Mr. Wagner has long been an advo-
cate of good roads and gives his support to all development in that line. He
is an active member of the Modern Woodmen of America.


George A. Kruse, one of the w'ell-known and prominent farmers of
Logan tow^nship, Marshall county, was born in Saunders county, Nebraska,
on March 25, 1878, the son of George and Anna (Jurgens) Kruse.

George and Anna f Jurgens) Kruse were natives of Germany, where
the father w-as born in 1832 and the mother in 1842. They received their
education in the public schools and there grew to maturity and were married
in 1864. Some time after their marriage they decided to come to America,
and after their arrival in this country, they came at once to Illinois, where
they established their home on a farm on which they lived for some years.
They later moved to Nebraska, where they engaged in general farming for
some time, after which they came to Marshall county in 1882. Here Mr.
Kruse purchased three hundred and sixty acres of excellent land in Herkimer
township. The tract at that time was all wild prairie, but of prime quality.
This he developed and improved, and at the time of his death he had a splen-
did house, two large barns and other buildings. Mr. Kruse died on July 18,
1914. his wife having died in 1895, both having died on the old homestead.

George Kruse was a man of much business ability and ow^ned at the
time of his death eight hundred and forty acres. He took much interest in
local affairs and was progressive in all things. He was identified with the
Republican party, but did not aspire to office. He and his wife assisted in
the educational and moral development of their home township, and were
held in the highest regard. They were the parents of the following chil-
dren : Catherine, Margaret, Mary, William, George, Henry, Anna, Chris-
tina, Andrew and two that died in infancy. Catherine is the wife of W^ill-
iam Rabe, a farmer and banker of Bremen, Kansas; Margaret Schaefer is


the wife of a farmer of Herkimer township; Mary Lohse lives in Logan
township, where Mr. Lohse is engaged in farming; WiUiam and Henry are
farmers of Herkimer township; George A., the subject of this sketch, is a
farmer of Logan township ; Anna Geihsler is a resident of Oklahoma where
her husband is engaged in farming; Christina Prelle is the wife of a mer-

Online LibraryEmma Elizabeth Calderhead FosterHistory of Marshall County, Kansas : its people, industries, and institutions → online text (page 68 of 104)