William A Johnson.

The history of Anderson County, Kansas, from its first settlement to the Fourth of July, 1876. online

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978.101
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1401619



M. L.



GENEALOGY COLLECTION



jU

,,,,, ALLEN COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY




3 1



833 01103 1215



THE HISTORY



OF



^ Anderson County,



K A :n' S A s ,



FROM ITS FIRST SETTLEMENT TO THE FOlltTIl

OF JULY, 1876.



BY

W. A. TOHNSON



CHAIRMAN OF HISTORICAL COinriTTKK.



PUBLISHED BY
KAUFFMAN & ILER, Garnett Plaindealhk,

1877.



Eutered according to act of Congress, in the year 1877, l)y

KAUFFMAN & ILEH,
In the office of tlie Librarian of Congress, Washington. 1), C.



1401619



CITIZENS' MEETINGS.



On the 13th day of May, A. D. 1876, there was
a meeting of citizens of Anderson county at the
county hall in Garnett (commonly known as the
"old settlers' meeting"), for the purpose of taking
the necessary steps to prepare, compile and publish
a full and complete history of the county from its
earliest settlement to the 4th day of July, 1876.

At this meeting a committee of sixteen per-
sons, selected from different parts of the County, was
appointed, and instructed to collect all matters and
items of interest in their respective localities, and re-
port at a future meeting. The following are the
names of the gentlemen appointed : W. A. John-
son, S. Kauffman, A. Simons, J. W. Vaughn, John
Moler, B. M. Lingo, J. H. Wolken, Zar Bennett,
A. G. West, T. J. Day, M. E. Osborn, Wm. Denny,
C. E. Dewey, Preston Bowen, J. Y. Campbell, I.
P. Sutton.

This committee organized by thb election of Solo-
mon Kauffman, chairman, and Charles E. Dewe}-,
secretar}', and adjourned to meet on the following
Saturday, May 20, to receive reports from the sev-
eral members thereof.

At the adjourned meeting of the committee, May
20, an executive committee was appointed, con-
sisting of W. A. Johnson, A. Simons, J. Y. Camp-
bell, Dr. Preston Bowen, Charles E. Dewey and
Solomon Kauffman, who were instructed by the



4 CITIZENS MEETINGS.

original committee to receive the reports of members
of the historical committee, and to collect from all
available sources all facts and matters of interest
necessary to form the basis of the history, to write
up, compile and prepare the same for publication,
delegating to the executive committee full authority
to select from their number, or outside of the com-
mittee, a suitable person or persons as historians to
write up and prepare the same for publication, and
to publish the history in book or pamphlet form.

The committee organized by the election of W.
A. Johnson, chairman, and Solomon Kauffman,
secretary, and proceeded to appoint the necessary
committees, and to apportion the work among them.

At a subsequent meeting of the executive com-
mittee (June 24), W. A. Johnson was selected as
the historian, to compile and write up from the ma-
terial furnished, and from the records and other
sources, and complete the history, the committee to
give every assistance in their power in the collec-
tion of material for the same.

The manuscript being prepared and ready fo4-
publication, a meeting of the executive committee
was called (January 27, 1877), to provide for its
publication. There being no funds in the hands of
the committee, the following proposition, presented
by the firm of Kauffman & Her, was accepted :

"That if the executive committee will turn over to Kautt-
mau & Her a subscrii)tion list of 125 hooks, at $1.25 per
copy, that they will publish 500 copies of the history, of the
style heretofore agreed upon, cloth bindino', and of the
manuscript prepared by W. A. Johnson, and supposed to
make about 2.50 pa<>"es, and will sell the same at $1.25 per
copy, witliout any further expense to the said committee.*"

W. A. Johnson, Chairman.
Solomon Kauffman, Secretar3^



ANDERSON COUNTY



Anderson county is located in the second tier of
counties west from Missouri, tifty miles south of the
Kansas river, and seventy miles north of the Indian
Territorv. It is twenty-four miles square, contains
live hundred and seventy-six square miles, and is
well supplied with water by the follo\N'ing streams :
North Pottowatomie, tiowinn- across the northern
portion, with the following tributaries in the north
and west : Sac creek, lanthe creek, Kenoma creek,
Elm creek, Thomas creek and Cherry creek : Cedar
creek and South Pottowatomie, rising in the cen-
tral portion, flowing north into the North Pottowato-
mie : Suirar creek with its numerous branches, in the
eastern portion, flowing east into Linn county; the
Little Osage river, with its numerous tributaries, in
the southeast, flowing southeast through Bourbon
countv : Deer and Indian creeks, flowing south
through Allen county. These are all streams of
pure, living water, abounding with fine tish. Along
most of these streams abundance of good timber is
found, consistino- of black walnut, burr oak, red oak,
hickory, elm, hackberrv, svcamore, hard and soft
maple, basswood, Cottonwood, wild cherry, locust



6 ANDERSON COUNTY.

and mulberry. The alluvium or bottom prairies are
found along all of these streams, being as tine quality
of land as can be found in the State, the soil be-
ing from two to live feet deep. The general sur-
face of the country is a gentle, rolling prairie, with a
few steep hills or bluffs, interspersed with many
beautiful mounds and high ridges. The soil is of
fine quality, and is admirably adapted to the grow-
ing of the cereals, fruit, hemp, flax, tobacco, pota-
toes, castor beans, broom corn and every variety of
products commonly grown in this latitude.

A superior quality of sand stone, for building pur-
poses, is found in the western and central parts of
the county. Limestone is found in most portions.
A fair quality of stone coal is found in the north-
western and southeastern portions.

Bottom land, lo per cent. : upland, 90 per cent. ;
timber, 6 per cent. ; prairie, 94 per cent. ; average
width of bottom, about two miles.

A more specific description of the different por-
tions of the county will be found in the chapters re-
lating to the different townships.



TABLE OF CONTENTS.



CHAPTp:k I.

FIRST SETTLEAfENTS.

History of the First Settleiiiont by the Pottowatoiuie
Imliaus in 1837 — Their Removal in 1854— First Settle-
ment by Whites in 18o4, 17

CHAPTER II.

ORGANIZATION.

Organization of the Territory — The several Eleotious
in 185.5-6 — Organization of Anderson County. - ^i

CHAPTER HI.

EARLY INCIDENTS.

Appointment of County Officers — Loeatino- First
County Road — Locating- Permanent County Seat —
First Term of District Court — Organization of Potto-
watomie Rifle Company — They Break up Gate's Court
at Shermanville, 29

CHAPTER IV.

NOTED SETTLERS, ELECTIONS, BORDER RUFFIANS.

Xoted Settlers of 185.5— Election of Delegates to To-
peka Constitutional Convention — Election on Adop-
tion of Constitution — Election of State Officers under
Topeka Constitution — Noted Settlers of 1856— Terri-
tory Overrun with Border Ruffians— The Probate
Judge, County Commissioners and Sheriff Flee the
Country — John Brown Avitli his Company Marching-
to the Rescue of Lawrence— United States Troops
Sent to Pottowatomie, - - - 35



8 CONTEXTS.

CHAPTEH V.

I'OTTOWATO.AriK (ilAUDS. KIKST CKLKUK AT I OX, I{ATT1>K.S,

SIKKEHINO,

Orjifauization of I'ottt>\vat()iiiie (riiards — Colebnition of
Fourth of July, IH06 — Strtig<>le between Free State
Men and Border Ruffians— Battle of :Middle Creek-
How a Ivuffian Lost his Nose — lin'id on Pottowatoniie
— Battle of Osawatoniie — (ireat Suftei-in«< ainon":
Settlers. _._ - - - 4.)

CH A I'TEIJ VI.

NEW SpyrTLHKS, TOWNSITKS. STEAM MILL.

Arrival of C. E. Dewey and Party from Ohio— First
Settlement on South Pottowatoniie — Death of Bear —
Survey of (lovernment Land — Location of Kansas
City, or lanthe,Townsite — Selection of Garnett Town-
site — Arrival of Louisville Colony, with Machinery
for Steam Mill — Prominent Settlers of (iarnett in
1858-9. - ' - - - - ' - - - - 56

CHAPTER VH.

I'OMTIC'AIi MEETINGS. COUNTY OFFICERS, ELECTIONS.
CELEBRATION, SICKNESS.

Mass Meetiuy at Hyatt — First Meetinii' in (iarnett —
County Officers Appointed — Election of Delegates
to Lecompton Constitutional Convention — Free State
Convention at Sac and Fox Agency — Celebration of
the Fourth of July at (xreeley — Dividing the ('ounty
intoMunicii)al Townships — Free State Conventionsat
Simons" and at Hyatt — First Election for County
Officers — \^)te of the I'recincts, except Shannon,
thrown out by Prol)ate Judge — Letter Giving
Reasons for Same — Free State Convention at (Grass-
hopper Falls — Sickness in the Fall of 1857. - - 67



CONTENTS. Q

CHAPTER VIII.

Er.ECTIONS, PROBATE COURT, PUBLIC BUILDINGS.

(^inimissioners to Attend Voting- Precincts— Election
under Leconipton Constitution— Resignation of
(bounty Otficers— Appointment of Agent to Contest
Claim— Election of Delegates to LeavenAvortli Con-
stitutional Convention— Election of County Otficers
—Election on Leavenworth Constitution— Jurisdic-
tion of Probate Courts— Troubles in West Part of
the County— Contract to Erect Public Buildins's-
Vote on Leconipton Constitution, _ . . ^8

CHAPTER IX.

CONVENTIONS, ELECTIONS, MAIL ROUTES, BORDER
TROUBLES, REPUBLICAN MEETING.

Convention at (3ttumwa— Election of Members of Ter-
ritorial Legislature— J]stablishing Mail Routes in
Southern Kansas— Free State Men Called on to De-
fend Settlers in the Border Counties — Posse fronj
Coftey County Arrests Settlers of Anderson County —
Burning- of Painter's and P'ox's Cabin by a Mob—
Marais des Cygne Massacre — John Brown's Parallels
— Liberation of Slaves — Squatters' Court Organized
in Anderson, Linn and other (bounties- P'irst Meet-
ing- of the Republicans of Anderson County, - 97

CHAPTER X.

POISONING, HORSE STEALING, MURDERS, TRIALS.

Attempt to Poison Banta — Trial of Theodore Royer for
Horse Stealing- — His Suspicious Disappearance — Mar-
riage of Leon Phillips and Sarah Potter — His Death —
Her Arrest for Murder — Examination, Escape, Re-
turn, Re-arrest and Trial — Murder of James Lo wry —
Trial of his Murderers — Conviction of Ford — His Par-
don by the Governor — Trial and Acquittal of Tuste-
son and Knouft" — Murder of Mrs. Adaline Duren —
Capture and Execution of the Murderer, - - 112
2



10 CONTENTS.

CHAPTER XI.

TAX, VALUATION, ROADS, ELECTIONS, POLITICAIi,

DROUTH.

First Tax Levy — Valuation on First Assessment — Ap-
pointment of County Superintendent of Public In-
struction — Location of Territorial Roads — Election of
Delegates to the Wyandotte Constitutional Conven-
tion — Adoption of the Constitution — Organization of
Political Parties— Election of State and County Offi-
cers—Drouth of 1860, &c., 123

CHAPTER XII.

THE WEATHER, FIRES, INDIANS.

Severity of the Winters of 1865-6 and 1866-7, and Mild-
ness of those of 1857-8 and 1858-9 — Prairie Fires— Sac
and Fox Indians, - - 136

CHAPTER XIII.

BRIGHT AND GLOOMY PROSPECTS, RAILROAD COMPAN-
IES, VOLUNTEERS, NEW PARTY.

Bright Prospects of 1858-9 — Organization of Railroad
Companies — Gloomy Forebodings of 1860 — Relief
Committees — Organization of Volunteer Companies
— Hardships Endured by the Women of the County —
Organization of New Party, Called " Farmers' and
Mechanics' Union Association" — Election in 1861, 139

CHAPTER XIV.

SENATORS, REPRESENTATIVES, JUDGES, COUNTY OFFI-
CERS.

Successive State Senators — Members of the House of
Representatives — Judges of the District Court —
County Officers, 149



CONTENTS. II

CHAPTER XV.

ACCIDENTS AND MISFORTUNES.

Shooting of Tipsword — DroAv^ning of Lester Dart —
Christian Feuerborn Killed by Indians — Josiah Kel-
lerman, his A\^ife and two Children Burned to Death
in a Prairie Fire — James A. Town and Son Drowned
in Pottowatomie Creek — Levi L. Hayden frozen to
Death, &c., 162

CHAPTER XVL

AID TO RAILROADS.

Various Bond Propositions to Aid Railroad Compan-
ies to Build Railroads — The Orders for Submission
and the Result of the Elections thereon, - - 160

CHAPTER XVn. '

GARNETT, PUBLIC BUILDINGS, BUSINESS MEN, OFFICERS.

Contest over Townsite — Removal of J. Y. Campbell,
Probate Judge — Appointment of Charles Hidden —
Pre-emption of Townsite — Public Buildings — Busi-
ness Houses — Business Men — Successive City Officers
and Postmasters, - - 169

CHAPTER XVm.

NEWSPAPERS, FAIR ASSOCIATION, RAILWAYS, SOCIETIES,

POSTOFFICES.

The Garnett Plaindealer, the First Paper in the County
— Garnett Courant, Established in 1868— Garnett
Journal, Established in 1873— Organization of Ander-
son County Fair Association— Organization of the
Paola & Fall River Railway Company— Charitable
Societies — Postofflces and Postmasters, - - 188



12 CONTENTS.

CHAPTER XIX.

CATTLE DISEASE, GRASSHOPPERS, THE SEASONS.

Spanish Fevor among" Cattle — Locusts, or Grasshop-
pers — Synopsis of the Seasons, - - - - 194

CHAPTER XX.

CHURCHPJS, SCHOOI.S.

Religious Zeal of the Early Settlers — Churches— Educa-
tional Interests — Formation of School Districts —
Building School Houses — Value of School Buildings,
&c., ' - - 201

CHAPTER XXI.

PROMINENT MEN.

Names of Prominent Men, and Incidents, - - 205

CHAPTER XXII.

MURDERS AND TRIALS.

Murder of Allen G. Poteet — Escape of his Murderer —
Murder of James Jackson by D. R. Pattee — Murder
of James Day by David Stewart — Murder of A\^illiam
Hamilton by John AV". Chamberlain — Trial of Dr.
Medlicott for the Murder of I. M. Ruth, - - 222

CHAPTER XXIII.

THE ARMY.

Names of Soldiers who Served in the Army for the Sup-
pression of the Rebellion — Names of the Heroic
Dead who Sacriticed their Lives in the cause of their
Country, 229

CHAPTER XXIV.

FELONIES.

Trials of Felonies, less than Murder, - . - 239



CONTENTS. 13

CHAPTEH XXV.

WALICEU TOWNSHIP.

Organization — Settlement— Prominent Men — Electiou.s
— Successive Otticers. -..-._ 245

CHAPTEH XXVI.

MOXKOE TOWX.SHIl'.

Organization — Settlement — Towns — Elections — Suc-
cessive Otiicers, -. - _.. 2oo

CHAPTEH XXVIi.

JACK.SOX TOWNSHIP.

IJoiiiularies — Organization — Streams — Soil — Timber-
Prominent Settlers from 18o5 to 1860 — First School —
First Marriage — First Deaths— Successive Otficers, 259

CHAPTEH XXV HI.

REEDER TOWNSHIP.

Early Settlements — Boundaries — Organization^OtH-
cers, etc., - __-. - - 263

CHAPTEH XXIX.

WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP.

Organization — Streams — Timber — Settlement — Succes-
sive Officers, - - . . - - - 27-4

CHAPTEH XXX.

PUTNAM TOWNSHIP.

Organization — Prominent Settlers — First School Dis-
trict—First Church Building— Mount Carmel College
— Successive Officers. - - - 279



14 CONTENTS,

CHAPTER XXXI.

lilNCOIvN TOWNSHIP.

Houuclaries — Org'anization — Prominent Settlers — Elba
Town Company — Successive Officers, - - 281

CHAPTER XXXII.

OZARK TOWNSHIP,

Urg-anization — Streams — First Election — Town of Col-
ony — Ohio and Indiana Colony — ^Snccessive Officers, 283

CHAPTER XXXHI.

RICH TOWNSHIP.

Boundaries — Soil — Streams — Timber — Coal — Early Set-
tlers— First Election — Successive Officers, - - 286

CHAPTER XXXIV.

INDIAN CREEK TOWNSHIP,

Organization — First Settlement — Soil — Streams — Suc-
cessive Officers, - 288



INTRODUCTION.



On the 24th of June, 1876, I was selected bv the histori-
cal committee to write out and prepare for publication a
history of the county from its tirst settlement to the pres-
ent time. 1 accepted the appointment, and at once en-
tered upon the work of collecting the incidents connected
with the settlement of the territory now embraced within
the limits of Anderson county. The settlement of this
portion of the Territory followed so closely on the pass-
age by Congress of the Kansas-Nebraska bill, with the re-
peal of the Missouri compromise, that many incidents of
the early struggles of this section have undergone Con-
gressional investigations, and have consequently already
passed into our national history.

In order to give a full and complete history of the tirst
settlement of the county, I commenced with the settle-
ment of the Pottowatomie Indians, in 1837, and their nu-
merous settlements along the Pottowatomies since, with
their removal, and the first white settlements, in 1854, and
have carefully written up the many thrilling adventures
and hardships encountered by the bold and hardy pioneers
who left their homes in civilized communities and took up
their line of march in covered wagons, across the path-
less prairies and through the wild jungles that lay in their
course, until their arrival at their new and romantic set-
tlements, where they intended to make their future homes,
and to help open up the wild prairies and beautiful valleys
and establish freedom, and make it a civilized community
and a desirable country for future generations. The bitter
controversy between contending parties in the tirst settle-
ment of the Territory — one intent upon establishing a
government for the new State recognizing and sustaining
the institution of slavery ; the other contending for a gov-
ernment recognizing the freedom of all mankind, as free
and equal under the law — has been touched upon. I have
also given the first settlements in the different portions of
the county ; the selection of townsites, their settlement



l6 INTRODUCTION.

iiiid i)i'()»i,ress, or docline. as the lacts required : the locit-
tion and settlement of ditterent colonies, with a l)rief
sketch of the more noted settlers prior to 1860; the many
elections in Territorial days: mass meetings, i)olitical con-
ventions, railroad meetings, oi-ganization of railread com-
panies, locating- roads and postotRces. location of county
seats, tirst term of court, and the manner in which busi-
ness was conducted in the courts for sevei'al years ; dividing'
the county into municiijal townships and school districts,
the building: of school houses, church organizations and
building" church editices, giving names of the successive
state senators, representatives, judges of the district court
and county otficers, from the organization of the county
to the present time, with dates of election or appointment,
and the time served by each; a brief stateuu-nt of the
organization of each township, its setthunents and suc-
(•essive township otticers ; also, a synopsis of seasons,
crops, visitation of locusts or grasshoppers, Spanish fever
aniong cattle, and the full particulars of all the murders
and murder trials in the county. 1 have carefully i)re-
pared a list of the names of the brave men wiio served in
the army for the suppression of the rebellion, giving the
company and regiment in which each served ; also the
nauH's of the iieroic dead who sacriticed their lives in the
service of their country.

I have endeavored to furnish a true and impartial his-
tory of the county from its tirst settlement to the present,
and in as brief a uumner as possible to do justice to all. In
the preparation of this history, I (tollected the facts from
the imperfect and partial records of the county, and de-
tached papers in the county otUces. from tiles of old new's-
papers, old letters, and fn)ui the recollection of numy of
the early settlers, as well as my own recollection.

The design of this history is to preserve for the i)eople
of Anderson county an imperishable record of its ( arly
history, now existing only in the memory of its earliest
settlers and in scattereil and detached papers and records,
which are now fast wasting away.

I have tried to avoid partiality or favor to any particular
person or place. VVhat I have written has been with a de-
sire to present the facts, and I now present these matters
to the public for their candid perusal and unbiased judg-
ment, hoping that it will meet the api)roval of my fellow
citizens who have helped contribute to the transactions
that uo to make up this histcu-v. W. A. JOIINSOX.



HISTORY OF



ANDERSON COUNTY, KANSAS.



CHAPTER I,



History of the Fif-st Settlement hy the Pottowat-
o»iie Indians y in iSjy — Thei?- Removal, in 18^4. —
Fi?-st Settlenient by Whites, in iSj^.

In 1837 the United States removed the Pottowat-
omie Indians of Indiana to a tract of country on the
Osage river, sufficient in extent and in every way
adapted to their habits and necessities. When thev
arrived on the Osage, or Marais des Cygne, river
a reservation of ten miles square had been set off
near Osawatomie, as a missionary reserve for the
various Indian tribes settled on the Osage river. The
earlv maps of Kansas Territory show the location of
this reservation. The Pottowatomie Indians had
their principal village at what is now known as Dutch
Henry crossing of the Pottowatomie, a stream that
waters the entire northern portion of Anderson
3



l8 HISTORY OF

county, which received its name from the Pottowat-
omie tribe, on their first arrival in the Territory.

Soon after they were located here they began to
extend their settlement south and west, along the
several tributaries of the Pottowatomie. In 1S3S
they made some improvements on the present town-
site of Greeley ; and in the neighborhood above they
built some bark shanties, put some small pieces of
land in cultivation, and planted some peach trees.
This was the first settlement of any kind in the ter-
ritorial limits of what now constitutes Anderson
county.

The Pottovvatomies remained in this locality until
the spring of 1854, when they were removed to that
portion of country known as Pottowatomie county,
where they owned a large tract of land. These In-
dians had numerous missionaries of the Baptist and
Methodist denominations stationed among them.

When the first whites settled in Anderson county,
in the spring of 1854, ^^*^y found some of the Indian
cabins, and old fields that they had cultivated. Some
of their peach trees remained on the creek for sev-
eral years afterward.

In the early part of May, 1854, ^'""^ ^^'^^ white
settlements were commenced on the Pottowatomie,
in the neighborhood where the town of Greeley is
now situated. Valentine Gerth and Francis Myer
were the first white settlers in the territory now in-
cluded in Anderson county. They came from Mis-
souri, and settled on the present townsite of Greeley,



ANDERSON COUNTY. ig

early in May, and planted a crop of corn, on an old
Indian field, and raised a fair crop therefrom. They
were young men, without families. Henry Harmon
came with his family, and setded near the junction
of the Pottowatomies, north of the present town of
Greeley. He came a few days later than Gerth and
Myer. Oliver P. Ran setded in the Sutton valley
the same spring. During the summer and fall fol-
lowing a few more settlers came and made settle-
ment in the same neighborhood, among whom were
Henderson Rice, J. S. Waitman,W. D. West, Thos.
Totton, i\nderson Cassel and Dr. Rufus Gilpatrick.

In the winter of 1854 ^"<^ ^^55 ^ number of Ger-
mans from St. Louis, Mo., came to the Territory
and located on the South Pottowatomie, above Gree-
ley — took claims, and built several cabins of poles.
These cabins extended as far up the stream as the
timber was desirable — they selected the most desir-
able timber claims on the creek. They returned to
St. Louis early in the spring of 1855, but, on account
of the troubles in the Territory, they never came
back ; and the settlers who came in the spring and
summer of 1855 moved into their cabins and occu-
pied their claims.

In the spring of 1854, after the Indians had re-
moved from the Pottowatomie, the territorv now
embraced within the limits of Anderson county was
entirely uninhabited ; not a human being resided
within an}^ portion of its territory ; it was one vast
unoccupied space. Not a single road entered its



20 HISTORY OK

territorial domain to guide the loneh' emigrant in
search of a home, or to direct his weary footsteps
over the prairies, or to disclose to him the places to
cross the streams. The Indians, their missionaries,
their traders, and the general loafers around Indian
camps, had all gone. Everything about their for-
mer abode was dismal, and a gloomy solitude per-
vaded the former homes of the noble red men of the
forest.

The prairie had put on its green vesture, the trees


1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Online LibraryWilliam A JohnsonThe history of Anderson County, Kansas, from its first settlement to the Fourth of July, 1876. → online text (page 1 of 18)