January 26, 1910
A HERMIT FORTY-NINE YEARS.
Grinter Dies in White Church Cabin;
Mourned for Wife.
Ambrose B. Grinter, known in Wyandotte county as the "Hermit of White Church," died yesterday morning in the little old frame house he built for his bride in 1859. Had he lived until February 23 he would have been 92 years old. He left no near relatives.
He arrived in White Church in 1859 in a wagon, bringing with him a young wife. They built a little cabin of rough logs. Two years later his wife died. Since that time he had lived a life of seclusion, rarely visiting even the village store and shunning society. The little children of the village used to be afraid of the odd old man and at sundown the hermit could be heard calling his chickens. "Come along, little ones; come in, Wyandottes."
The little children's fears were groundless, though for a year or more before his death he at times chatted with the school children as they passed his door.
Early this winter he sat by a cheerful wood fire in his house and told a story of his life to a friend.
"I was born in Logan county, Ky., February 23, 1818," he said. "My daddy was a farmer and a hunter and he early learned me to use a rifle. When I was a lad of 14 he bound me out to a cabinet maker, William McMullen, who was afterward my 'daddy-in-law," and I learned his trade. I married his daughter, Mary Elizabeth, when I was 22. We lived in Kentucky till 1858, when we started out for Kansas in an old linch-pin wagon, which my 'daddy-in-law' had made for us. We drove two sleek oxen. When we reached Wyandotte county I bought fifty-four acres from the government. We built a little cabin and were very happy until Mary died and since then somehow or another, I don't care for the society of others. I spent my time in the woods with my dog and gun until I became too feeble to get about and now I must sit by the fire and smoke and dream."
Mr. Grinter had suffered with a cancer on his face for many years. About two years ago he went to Bethany hospital for treatment, where he remained for more than a year. While he was gone his neighbors cleaned up the house, which no woman's hand had touched since Mrs. Grinter died. One of these rooms was filled almost entirely with copies of old newspapers, neatly folded. Among these were copies of the Kansas City Journal and the Wyandotte Herald of the '50's. Mr. Grinter has been a reader of both papers for many years.
Another room, apparently that of his wife, was found in the condition it was left many years ago. An old sunbonnet hung on the post of the old-fashioned cord bedstead, the covers of the bed were rumpled and a woman's dress hung over the footboard. Mothers in the little village have long told stories to their little ones of how old Mr. Grinter, with a tender remembrance, had never touched the room since her death and never allowed strangers to look into it.
Funeral services ill be conducted by the Rev. J. W. Payne this afternoon at 3 o'clock at the old Grinter chapel. Burial will be in the chapel grounds.
Labels: death, newspapers, pioneers
January 3, 1910
ONCE THE GATE CITY.
Pioneer Recalls the Days
Before the Railroad
Enchanting is the romance of the Golden West, the story of mountain and plain. Forming the most striking drama in American history, the record, alas, is but fragmentary -- the half has not been told. For, imperfectly have the annals been kept of the vast domain west of the Mississippi river from the time of early settlement to the present. Evidences of marvelous transformation are at hand, fruits of pioneer privations are enjoyed, but the annal of achievement in details has been neglected by historians. Reminiscences of early settlers can now alone supply the deficiency.
To a great extent has the history of Independence, Mo., to do with that of the West. This city was the scene of the initial step in the march of progress. Preparatory to crossing the desert, westward bound caravans procured supplies there. Frontiersmen, explorers and prospectors, returning home, brought to Independence the first news of discovery, for this city was then the greatest trading post in the West.
Prominent among the pioneers was Henry A. Schnepp, who is now a resident of Galesburg, Ill., but is now visiting his brother, David Schnepp, at the latter's home, 413 Whittier place. Mr. Schnepp was conspicuously identified with the early growth of Independence and lived there for fifteen years, leaving during the year 1890.
"In the early fifties Independence was the outfitting point for all the country west of the Missouri river and was the headquarters for frontiersmen," said Mr. Schnepp yesterday afternoon. "The paramount issue was to retain this lucrative trade and active measures were adopted with that end in view. This gave impetus to the construction of the first railroad in the West, which ran from the river to this city. A depot was built at Wayne City and a terminal established at the postoffice. The cars, which ran over wooden rails, were drawn by horses.
"Before the construction of the Hannibal & St. Joe Railway in1856 all transportation was by river. Apropos the recent agitating with regard to navigating the Missouri, it seems to me that as the river was navigable then, it should be now."
GOLD FOUND BY MISSOURIAN.
Mr. Schnepp staged through Iowa when that state was but sparsely settled. When he traveled along the Hawkeye frontier in 1854 the capital of that state was located at Iowa City and the territory west of Des Moines, the present capital, was inhabited almost exclusively by Indians.
"I could never forget the first overland mail route to Salt Lake City. The mail was carried by stage coach and the trip required many days under favorable weather conditions. The route extended from Independence to Westport, thence to Fort Riley, in Kansas; Fort Bridges, in Wyoming, and on to Salt Lake. The charge for carrying each letter was 25 cents, collectable on delivery. Prior to the establishment of the pony express in 1853-4, mail from the West was carried by a boat around Cape Horn."
Mr. Schnepp says that the gold fields of California were discovered by Joseph D. Childs, an uncle of C. C. Childs, an Independence banker. A contractor by profession, Joseph Childs was erecting a mill near Sacramento when workmen excavating a race found gold. This discovery started the rush to California, and Mr. Schnepp was one of the first to go for a fortune. He did not acquire fabulous wealth, but returned home with enough gold that he has not since been called a poor man.
Labels: California, Fort Riley, history, Independence, Missouri river, pioneers, railroad
January 2, 1910
OLD SETTLERS IN MINORITY.
Westport Pioneers Surrender Their
Party to Young People.
A few old-timers of Westport watched a great many new-timers make merry in Little's hall, 311 Westport avenue, last night. As the affair was originally planned, the old settlers were to be the whole show, but so few of them attended that they were submerged in the swirl of young pleasure seekers, and they appeared quite content to sit along the wall and watch the nimbler heels knock off the score.
The Westport Improvement Association was the host. The three old-timers present, not including John Tobin, who was born there -- but not last night -- were Philip Becker, August Horn and Julius Beaver. These three old gentlemen would not be prevailed upon to do more than walk around the hall at the head of the grand march.
Alderman Darius Brown was an active figure on the dancing floor. John Tobin also ran. More than 250 people attended the dance.
Labels: dancing, pioneers, Westport
November 8, 1909
OLD FOLKS' DAY AT
CHURCH IN ROSEDALE.
W. I. DAVIS, 65, AND WIFE, 62,
ONLY PIONEERS PRESENT.
Aggregate Age of Thirty-three Per-
sons Who Attended Is 2,280
Years -- Two Weeks' Special
Service Is Inaugurated.
ROSEDALE'S METHODIST CHURCH THIRTY YEARS AGO.
Mrs. Susan Weller, who is 90 year of age, was the oldest person to attend the old folks' reunion in the First Methodist church, Rosedale, yesterday morning. The oldest man in attendance was William S. Garrett, who is 81. The aggregate age of thirty-three persons who attended this unique gathering is 2,280 years.
The Rosedale church was organized thirty three years ago and the original enrollment showed just thirty members. Out of that original membership there were only two of the pioneers present yesterday. These were Mr. andMrs. W. I. Davis. Mr. Davis is 65 years old while his wife is 62. The husband is still active and is an engineer at the Swift packing plant.
FIRST METHODIST CHURCH AS IT APPEARS TODAY.
In the thirty years that the church has been in existence there have been many changes. The original church was a small frame structure which cost $1,000. The present edifice is a magnificent stone structure, which cost $25,000 and which is one of hte most imposing buildings of the kind in the state. Its membership has grown from a meager thirty to more than 250 and its debt is more than half paid.
CUSTOM IS POPULAR.
Twelve years ago the custom of holding an old folks' reunion each autumn was establisheda nd this event has proved a popular one. H. W. Gates always has supplied buggies and carriages and Amos Martin and S. B. Bell, Jr., have provided automobiles. With these the persons who are too feeble to walk to the service are taken to church.
The features of yesterday's service was a sermon by Rev. I. V. Maloney, the pastor, who took for his text: "Thou shalt come to old age like as a shock of corn cometh in the season," Job v. 26.
The church was decorated with autumn leaves and foilage and the choir rendered a special music programme.
At the church last night a two weeks' special service was inaugurated. There will be services every night, the pastor being assisted by the Rev. Marion Donleavy of Kansas City, Kas.
Labels: churches, ministers, pioneers, reunions, Rosedale, Seniors
October 2, 1909
CALVIN SMITH, MISSOURI
PIONEER, IS DEAD AT 96.
Came to the State With His Father
in 1816 -- Gave Smithville
Calvin Smith, who was born December 19, 1813, who perhaps was the oldest living Jackson county pioneer in the point of residence, died at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon at his home, 2495 Harrison street.
Besides a widow, Mr. Smith is survived by six children, Henry, James and Evaston Smith, and Mrs. J. S. Setord, Mrs. Anna Goodenough Smith and Mrs. G. McCleary. Henry and James are lawyer practicing in this city. Burial will be Sunday afternoon in Valley Falls, Kas., under direction of the Masons.
Mr. Smith was born at Humphrey Smith's Mills on Buffalo Creek, New York. His father was a farmer. When tales of the rich French province of Missouri were first wafted East he was quick to catch their inspiration and migrate. In his memoirs written for the benefit of relatives a few years ago, Mr. Smith tells the story of the trip.
"On February 29, 1815," he said, "my father prepared for a trip to the West. He had $4,000 in gold which he put in a belt and buckled it around his waist. In an old style two-wheeled ox cart, drawn by a yoke of oxen, he put his famly and started for Missouri. We went to Olean, a point on the Allegheny river. With his wife and four children he embarked there on a canoe At Pittsburgh, Pa., father had to attach the canoe to a flat bottom boat going to New Orleans.
TO MISSOURI BY BOAT.
"At Louisville, Ky., we met three or four families who were going to the new territory of Missouri. Father chipped in with them and bought a keep boat and we floated down the Ohio river to its mouth.
At the moth of the Ohio river we turned into the Mississippi and the boat was propelled up that river by men who walked along the shore and drew the boat after them, while a man on the boat with a long pole kept it from running ashore.
In time we reached St. Louis, 190 miles from the mouth of the Ohio river. We stopped there two or three weeks. Then we all boarded the keel boat again for another move.
IN CLAY COUNTY IN 1822.
"Eighteen miles brought us to the Missouri river and we went up that river 300 miles to a place called Cole's fort, now Boonville, Mo. We reached there on the first day of July, 1816, just four months to a day from the time we left New York.
"On the 14th day of July my sister, Missouri, was born and about five weeks later, August, 1816, father and his family crossed the Missouri river and settled eight miles east of Old Franklin, Howard co unty. We moved several times, but stayed in that county until 1819. We then moved to Carroll county, Mo. This was during the 'Missouri question,' whether the new incoming state should be a slave state or a free state. The missouri compromise in 1822 settled in favor of a slave state.
"In 1822 father took another move to Clay county, Mo., and settled at a place now called Smithville, in the northwest part of the county. It was then a wilderness, being ten miles to the nearest neighbor."
Mr. Smith came to Kansas City in 1882. Two years later his wife died adn he married a second time in 1889. The second wife, who was Miss Fannie Burton of Kansas City, is living.
During the civil war Mr. Smith sided with the North.
Labels: death, Harrison street, history, New Orleans, New York, pioneers, smithville, St Louis
September 28, 1909
J. L. NORMAN, SCHOOL
BOARD PIONEER, DEAD.
SERVED WITH PUBLIC EDUCAT-
ION FOR TWENTY YEARS.
Appointed Secretary Year Ago After
Retirement From the Abstract
Business -- Funeral Arrange-
ments Not Made.
THE LATE JOSEPH L. NORMAN.
Joseph Lafayette Norman, civil war veteran, compiler of the first set of abstract books in Kansas City, member of the school board for twenty years and its secretary for the last year, died at his home, 816 West Thirty-ninth street at 10:15 o'clock last night after an illness of two months. The funeral arrangements probably will be announced today, by which time a son who is in Mexico, and another who is in California can be heard from.
Joseph Lafayette Norman was born at Hickory Hill, Ill, October 21, 1841. In 1857, the year following the death of his mother, the family moved to Greeley, Kas., and took up a homestead there. A year later Mr. Norman and his father returned to Illinois. In the fall of 1859 Mr. Norman and his father came back West and located at what was Westport, Mo., one mile west of what is now Fortieth street and State Line. The deceased conducted a private school in Westport, and he had to close it at the outbreak of the civil war, August 14, 1862, the day of the battle of Independence, Mo.
ONE SON AN ARMY OFFICER.
Mr. Norman closed his school and with five of his pupils reported at Fort Union on the west side of the city and tendered their services to the government. He served for three years as a member of company A of the Twelfth regiment of Kansas volunteer infantry. At the battle of Westport on his twenty-third birthday, Mr. Norman was aide to General S. R. Curtis and carried across the field of battle an important message under an extremely dangerous fire. His first wife, Miss Martha Jane Puckett, a native of Virginia, died January 1, 1901.
They had five children, the oldest of whom, Captain Trabor Norman, is at present in the infantry, in Southern California. Another son, Joseph L, Jr., is in Mexico. Fred, Frank and Miss Jennie Norman are the other children.
OF A MILITARY FAMILY.
On June 25, 1903 Mr. Norman married Miss Katherine Gent of Kansas City. A son, Howard, was born of this union. Mr. Norman was a member of Farragu-Thomas Post, G. A. R. No. 8, and was also a Mason. H e was the first quartermaster of the Third Regiment N. G. M. In politics he was a Republican.
All of his ancestors were inclined to the military life. His brother, Calvin M., his father, Jones, and his wife's father, William E. Plunkett, all served in the civil war.
His paternal grandfather, Joseph Norman, served in the war of 1812, and his great-grandfather served in the revolutionary war, enlisting from North Carolina.
Mr. Norman commenced the work of getting up a set of abstract books at Independence, Mo. In October, 1865, and in the spring of 18657, with Lafayette Trabor he opened an abstract office. Later the Trabor interests were sold to Richard Robertson. Mr. Norman retired from this business a year ago.
Labels: books, Civil War, death, history, Independence, military, pioneers, schools, veterans, Westport
September 12, 1909
DESPONDENT, HANGS HIMSELF.
Wm. Mann, 80, Grieved for Wife
Who Died in 1905.
Brooding over the loss of his aged wife who died February 24, 1905, William Mann, 80 years old, a pioneer farmer of Johnson county, Kas., became despondent early yesterday morning and hanged himself with a halter rope in the barn of his son, James Mann, who lives in the suburbs of Bonner Springs. The body was discovered at 10 o'clock by Harley Mann, the ten-year-old grandson. An examination made by the Wyandotte county Coroner J. A. Davis proved that life had been extinct several hours.
Mr. Mann was at one time widely known as a successful farmer of Johnson county, where he lived more than 35 years. In 1903 he moved to Bonner Springs in Wyandotte county accompanied by his only son James. There the two went into the potato raising business. Recently James Mann has been locally known as the potato king from the fact that he yearly cultivated 300 acres of the tubers, considerably more than any other farmer in the vicinity.
Labels: Bonner Springs, farmers, food, Johnson county, pioneers, Seniors, Suicide
September 4, 1909
WAGON MASTERS TALK
OF OLD TRAIL DAYS.
PLAINSMEN OF 50 YEARS AGO
HOLD A REUNION.
Recall Incidents of Overland Travel
When Indians Roamed Plains.
Man's Arm Amputated With
an Old Saw.
Wagon masters of fifty years ago, to whom the Santa Fe and Great Salt Lake trails were as familiar as their own country roads, gathered yesterday at the "old settlers' " reunion at the Independence fair.
Some of them came from Texas, but the greater number came from Kansas. When they left for the long overland trip it was as wagon masters, but yesterday they came back to a world moved by machinery and electricity. In '49 they left by the slow going wagon train, fording rivers and traveling through a country unblazed by an ax.
The entire forenoon was devoted to reminiscent stories by old men. They held aloof from the track, but their hands tightened on one another as they met.
"There is Wood McMillain," said one. "I would know him as quick as I would know my mother."
The next minute two gray-haired men were deep in the recollection of friends, many of them gone, and as they listened to one another the meeting warmed into life misty memories of the past. Mr. McMillain was one of the old wagon masters of '49. Many an expedition he conducted across the great American desert, now known as Kansas, and yesterday he met many men in the prime of life who knew him. He is now a resident of Denison, Tex.
WHEN INDIANS ROAMED THE PLAINS.
The introduction of wagons for the overland trade came as early as 1824. Colonel Marmaduke was one of a party of eighty which formed a company for the Western trade, 800 miles distant.
When they returned they had silver ore in rawhide sacks and piled the sacks in an adjacent lot close to what is now known as the public square of the county seat.
Jackson Tarquo was on the grounds yesterday.
"I have been over the route several times," he said. "I have never had trouble with the Indians but once or twice. Indians would never sacrifice their men except for revenge or in warfare. Many redskins were killed without cause and in consequence there was bad feeling between them and the wagon men.
"Of course, once in a while a man or a boy would be shot on route and we would bury him after the fashion of the plains. On one occasion the Indians ran off about 400 ponies we were bringing through. They asked for one horse, then for two, and finally, with a whoop, they took all of the ponies. Oxen were used in the early days, but in '49 most of the hauling was done by mules.
"I'll bet I can yet load a wagon and store away more goods than any moving van in Kansas City, and that when the wagon arrives at the end of the long journey not a box or object will be moved one inch out of place. We loaded wagons in those days, and wagon masters understood the art. We would carry through thousands of dollars' worth of goods.
RUDE SURGICAL OPERATIONS.
"Every wolf yell meant Indians to novices in the old days. I went on one trip I can't forget. There was a man who accidentally shot himself in the arm. It was hot and mortification set in. The man would not give up, so we found a saw, whetted a knife, heated wagon bolts red hot and performed a crude job of amputation. After the arm was opened to the bone, we found the saw's teeth were too big, so we filed smaller teeth and sawed through the bone. That man lived for thirty years afterward."
W. Z. Hickman was another old wagonmaster. He is now employed in the county surveyor's office. Yesterday he again became a wagon master for the time being and participated in the talk about the trackless and treeless plains.
Yesterday was the banner day for attendance. The country people turned out. Never was there such a gathering of wagons in the fair grounds. Stations east of Independence sold all of the excursion tickets and before noon the grounds were filled.
Hundreds of awards were made yesterday and special premiums given. F. M. Corn was awarded the third prize for the best yellow corn. J. E. Jones secured first prize and P. H. Curran second. The products of the soil had their inning, and blue ribbons floated from pumpkin to apple piles.
Labels: history, Independence, Native Americans, pioneers, Santa Fe Trail, Texas
August 30, 1909
HADLEY WILL OPEN
OLD FASHIONED COUNTY SHOW
IS ON TODAY.
For a Week Products of Farm Will
Take Precedence Over Thrill-
ers -- Special Features
There was a bunch of tired men in Independence last night who seemed happy in their fatigue. They were the directors of the Independence fair and everything was ready for the opening this morning. The fair this year is going to be just as it has always been, an old-fashioned county affair where the products of the farm take precedence over thrillers of summer park invention and where a prize hog looks a whole lot better than a motor car, for the time being.
And if exhibits are to be counted, the Independence fair is better off this year than ever before. It has been a good year on the farms of Jackson county, and for that reason the exhibits are going to be the largest in the history of the fair. The mountain of pumpkins, a yearly feature of the fair, is to be cooked into pies and distributed to visitors as edible souvenirs. That is to be done on the last day, Saturday.
HADLEY TO OPEN FAIR.
The fair is to have executive recognition and it will be opened at 10 o'clock this morning by Governor H. S. Hadley. The governor will make his speech at that time, after the salute of Battery B of Kansas City has been fired. After the speech of the governor, the battery will maneuver and the fair will be on in earnest. The gates will be open at 7 o'clock in the morning.
The directors have offered purses aggregating $10,000 for the race meeting, and there is a good list of entries. Independence is on three racing circuits and more than 200 horses will strive for the various purses. There will be from one to three races a day.
SERIES OF SPECIAL DAYS.
Admission to the grounds is to be free this year and as an added attraction, there is to be a fireworks display every night. A band will give a free concert every night. Zach Mulhall's Wild West show will be there.
There is to be a series of special days. Tomorrow is to be a special racing day and there will be an extra race for an extra prize. Thursday will be Kansas City day, when Kansas City exhibitors and Kansas City exhibits will have full sway. Friday will be Old Settler's day. Many of the old settlers of Jackson county and the counties surrounding will attend the fair on that day. Saturday is to be pumpkin day.
Labels: amusement, animals, fireworks, food, Herbert Hadley, Independence, military, music, pioneers, races, Wild West shows
July 31, 1909
DEATH CAME SUDDENLY
TO P. D. RIDENOUR.
HEART DISEASE CLAIMED PIO-
NEER WHOLESALE GROCER.
Had Been Ill at Home About Ten
Days, but Fatal Termination
Was Not Expected by
THE LATE PETER D. RIDENOUR.
Peter D. Ridenour, pioneer wholesale grocer of Kansas City, died suddenly of heart disease at 11:00 last night at his home, 1416 East Eighth street. He was 78 years old, and as the result of complications due to old age has been kept home from the store at 933 Mulberry street, in the West Bottoms, for over a week. His fatal illness is believed to have begun ten days ago when he first complained of shooting pains in the vicinity of his heart.
At his bedside when he died were his wife, Mrs. Sarah L. Ridenour and his son, Edward M. Ridenour. The family physician, Dr. Lester Hall, and Dr. R. T. Sloane, who had been called in, were in attendance, but neither believed death would result from the indisposition.
BORN ON OHIO FARM.
Besides the widow and the son, Mr. Ridenour is survived by three daughters, Mrs. Catherine Lester, Mrs. Alice Raymond and Miss Ethel Ridenour, all of this city, the last named living at home. Four brothers are living, T. M. Ridenour in Colorado, Irving W. in Richmond, Ind.; Elisha at Liberal, Mo., and Samuel Ridenour, who through the death of his brother will become president of the Ridenour Baker Grocery Company, lives at the Washington hotel.
Funeral arrangements have not been made.
Peter D. Ridenour was born May 5, 1831, on a farm of one half mile south of the village of College Corner, O. His parents were of Dutch extraction and pioneers of the state. The town received its name form its location in the northwest corner of the land donated to the Miami university. In 1837 his father bought a store in the town and in it for the next seven or eight years young Ridenour gleaned the knowledge of the grocery business so useful to him in after years.
At the age of 26, Mr. Ridenour married Miss Sarah Louise Beatty at Xenia, O., and moved to Lawrence, Kas. Part of the trip was made in boats because there was no railroad leading into Kansas City or in fact any other town in the vicinity of the Sunflower state.
BEGAN BUSINESS IN LAWRENCE.
With his brother, Samuel, who also had left the old home in Ohio to come West, Mr. Ridenour started a small grocery store at Lawrence taking as partners in the business Harlow W. Baker of that city and later his three brothers. This was in 1858.
By the death of Mr. Ridenour last night Samuel Ridenour became the sole survivor of the original Ridenour Baker Grocer Company. This firm was incorporated thirty-one years ago when having grown to dignified proportions it was moved from Lawrence to its present ho me on Mulberry street. Such has been its progress in Kansas City that it has been able to establish branch stores at several points. Both Peter and Samuel Ridenour grew wealthy. P. D. Ridenour's estate probably amounts to about $300,000.
Mr. Ridenour was known as a public spirited citizen. Three years ago he was vice president of the Commercial Club and was offered the presidency but he refused because of his advanced age. He maintained a large farm near Dallas, twelve miles from Kansas City, where he had intended to spend the remainder of his life.
Labels: bakers, Commercial Club, death, doctors, Eighth street, grocers, history, Lawrence, Mulberry street, pioneers
July 30, 1909
PIONEER BLACKSMITH DIES
LEAVING $150,000 ESTATE.
Henry Nevins Came to Kansas City
in 1869, and Opened Shop
on Third Street.
Henry Nevins, pioneer horseshoer of Kansas City and in the early days a fair prototype of Longfellow's "Village Blacksmith," died at 5 o'clock yesterday afternoon at the family residence, 1032 Olive street. He was 70 years old.
He was born in Tipperary county, Ireland, and came to this country when a young man, spending some years in Canada, where he learned the blacksmith trade and where he married. Later he crossed the line into the United States, settling first in Burlington, Ia., and from there removing to Kansas City in 1869.
He first opened a shop at Third street and Grand avenue and for twenty years Nevins's blacksmith shop was a landmark.
In those early days when railroads were in their infancy and mules and horses were yet the main standby for transportation, the blacksmith was a most important person.
Nevins met the situation with an energy that never seemed to tire, and it is on record that during rush seasons he has been known to stand in the smith forty-eight hours at a stretch, without sleep, eating in the shop meals brought to him by his wife.
Early in his career in Kansas City Mr. Nevins began to put his savings into real estate, and this policy he continued throughout his career. But once in his life did he part with real estate he had purchased, and that was about eight years ago, when he sold to the Armour Packing Company the property at 306 West Eighth street for $10,000, and for which he had paid $900 in early days. For an other property next to the Gillis opera house, which cost him $800 he recently refused an offer of $800 a foot.
Practically all his wealth is in inside Kansas City real estate and a conservative estimate of his estate places the figure at $150,000.
Later he moved his blacksmith shop to 512 Walnut street, and when that property became too valuable for a blacksmith shop he moved once more to 512 Grand avenue, where he continued in business until five years ago, when he retired, owing to advancing age and continued ill health.
He leaves a wife and six children, three sons and three daughters. The children are: John M., James H., William J., Elinore, Catherine Marie and Rose.
The funeral will be held Saturday morning at 9 o'clock from St. Aloysius's church, and burial will be at St. Mary's cemetery.
Labels: Armour plant, blacksmiths, cemetery, churches, death, Eighth street, Grand avenue, immigrants, Olive street, pioneers, real estate, Third street, Walnut Street
July 27, 1909
HELPED MAKE HISTORY
IN KANSAS CITY KAS.
BYRON JUDD, RESIDENT SINCE
1857, IS DEAD.
Held Many Positions of Trust and
equipped First Horse Car Line
in the City -- Was 85
In the death last night of Byron Judd, a pioneer resident of Kansas City, Kas., the city was deprived of perhaps its most widely known and lovable characters. He was a man of rare ability, and was noted for his keen, incisive mind. Every enterprise of worth which marked the early transition of a straggling Indian village into the metropolis of the state is closely interwoven with the name and personality of Byron Judd. Although his advanced age of late years prevented his active participation in the affairs of the city, his mind retained the vigor of youth and his counsel upon questions of moment was highly valued and eagerly sought.
ANCESTORS IN MAYFLOWER.
Byron Judd was born August 13, 1824, at Otis , Berkshire county, Mass. His parents were farmers and pointed with pride that their ancestry could be clearly traced to the landing of the Mayflower. He received his education at the state normal and at Southwick academy. As a young man in his ho me town he held many minor offices, among which were school commissioner, township assessor and selectman.
In 1855 he left his native state and journeyed westward to Iowa, being made deputy land recorder at Des Moines, a position he held until his removal in 1857 to Kansas City, Kas., or, as it was then known, Wyandotte. In 1869 he was elected a member of the board of aldermen of the city. In 1863 he was elected county treasurer of Wyandotte county. He was married in 1865 to Mrs. Mary Louise Bartlett.
During the early days of Wyandotte he engaged in the banking and land business which he carried on for many years, having been the first land agent in the city. He was president of the council in 1868 and was elected mayor in 1869. This administration was remarkable for the spirit of enterprise displayed and was in fact the beginning of that civic pride which has since characterized the city.
EQUIPPED FIRST HORSE CAR.
Mr. Judd was made United States commissioner in 1870. In 1871 he organized the First National bank of that city and served as president and cashier of the institution. He remained a director in the bank for many years. In connection with W. P. Overton and Luther Wood he went to St. Louis and purchased the material and equipment for the first horse car line in the city.
He was elected state senator in 1872 and served in that capacity until 1876. Although a staunch Democrat, he was not in sympathy with the border warfare and many of the outrages committed during that period were fearlessly denounced by him.
His is survived by his only daughter, Mrs. Sarah Judd Greenman, public librarian of Kansas City, Kas.
Funeral arrangements have not been made.
Labels: banking, Civil War, death, Des Moines, history, Kansas City Kas, libraries, pioneers, politics
July 13, 1909
OF MISSOURI DEAD.
DR. WILLIS P. KING SUCCUMBS
AFTER LONG ILLNESS.
As a Practitioner and Author, Dr.
King Was Recognized Among
the Foremost of His
DR. WILLIS P. KING.
Dr. Willis P. King, a pioneer physician of Missouri, died yesterday afternoon at 3:15 o'clock at the family home, 3031 Wabash avenue, after a lingering illness of four months. Dr. King had been unconscious for several days. Funeral services will be held at the home at 10 o'clock Wednesday morning, after which the body will be sent to Sedalia for interment. Dr. Burris A. Jenkins of the Linwood Boulevard Christian church will conduct the funeral services at the house. The services at Sedalia will be conducted by the masons. Dr. King was 69 years old.
Willis Percival King was one of the pioneer physicians of Missouri. He began the practice of medicine in Missouri in a frontier county in 1866 after having mastered the profession of medicine and having graduated from the St. Louis Medical college, which course consisted only of lectures. For two years after his graduation Dr. King was what was known in those days as a country doctor, riding circuits at times, like the lawyer and preacher. Concerning this period of his life he has written a book, called, "Stories of a Country Doctor," which is now in its fourth edition. The stories are reminiscences of his own life in that capacity.
MOVED TO NEVADA.
After his two years of country practice, Dr. King moved to Nevada, where he remained several years. In the latter '80s he moved again and went to Sedalia, Mo., where he remained until he came to Kansas City, over twenty-five years ago.
Dr. King was born in Missouri, his parents, William and Lucy K. King, having been brought to Missouri in their mothers' arms. The family remained on a farm in Vernon county, and Willis King stayed with his parents until he was 14 years of age.
At that time his thirst for knowledge got the better of him, and since there were no schools anywhere near his home he ran away. In order to pay for his education he worked on farms in the summer time and went to school during the winter. When the Hannibal & St. Joseph railroad bridge was being built he worked at that and made enough money to put him through another year of school. In 1862 he began to study medicine by himself, and from that time on he gave his life to that profession.
WROTE "PERJURY FOR PAY."
When Dr. King moved to Kansas City he was made a surgeon at the Missouri Pacific hospital, and in 1884 he became the assisting chief surgeon at the institution. He served in that capacity for fifteen years, at the end of which time he retired to private practice. About ten years ago Dr. King contracted blood poison from a needle wound received while performing an operation. From that time until his death his health had been so precarious that he could not give much time to active practice.
Dr. King was a lecturer at the Universities of Missouri and Kansas in the medical departments of each institution. He is the author of many treatises on medical science which have won considerable honor for him in the medical fraternity. Four years ago he wrote his last book, "Perjury for Pay," which has had wide circulation.
On June13, 1861, Dr. King married Miss Albina H. Hoss of Pettis county. From that union six children have been born. They are: Robert Emmett King, Willis P. King, Jr., Mrs. Almeda K. Humphrey, Albert H. King, Granville King and Albina King, who is now dead.
Labels: churches, death, doctors, funerals, ministers, pioneers, Sedalia, St Louis, universities
July 11, 1909
BOUGHT THE FIRST LOT
IN KANSAS CITY.
J. C. EVANS, PIONEER RESIDENT,
DIES AT AGE OF 76 YEARS.
Was Second White Child Born Here.
Became Indian Trader in Early
Days -- Funeral Not
J. C. EVANS.
J. C. Evans, 76 years of age, who was the second white child to be born in Kansas City, died at the University hospital yesterday afternoon as the result of an operation. Mr. Evans had been ill but a short while.
On Dundee place, and on the very highest point of that place, J. C. Evans was born. All around the house was farm land and wilderness, and off to the south and west was the thriving town of Westport. For almost twenty-one years Mr. Evans lived in the house on Dundee's place and did his share towards the building of the greater city upon which he looked with utmost pride in the last years of his life.
Mr. Evans, in those early days, was a trader by occupation, and many were the trips which he took over the old Santa Fe trail down into the Southwest to barter and trade with Indians. With the Indians around Kansas City he had many dealings and was looked upon as a fair man by them.
Shortly before the civil war Mr. Evans married Miss Elizabeth Campbell of Clay county. Within a few months the couple moved from Kansas City to a farm in Clay County, where Mr. Evans had lived until his death.
In 1880 Mrs. Evans died, and four years later Mr. Evans married Miss Sarah M. Plummer of Paris, France, whom he met while she was visiting in this country. Mrs. Evans survives her husband.
Among the interesting facts surrounding the long life of Mr. Evans are two most prominent. It was he who surveyed the first plat of Kansas City, and it was he who bought the first town lot.
Mr. Evans was the son of William B. and Amelia McGee Evans, both of whom were prominent in the pioneer days of Kansas City. Mrs. Evans, his mother, was one of the old Westport McGees.
Eight children survive: Mrs. S. P. Stowers, Millersburg, Mo.; Paul Evans, Mountain Grove, Mo.; Amelia Evans, Clay county; Mrs. J. H. Garth, 1035 Monroe avenue, Kansas City; Mrs. W. R. Soper, Independence, Mo.; Mrs. J. C. McGee, Texarkana, Tex.; J. C. Evans, Jr., Oldham, Mo., and J. M. Evans of Clay county. In Kansas City Mr. Evans has a brother, M. M. Evans, Twenty-fifth and Troost, and a sister, Mrs. William Vineyard, 1475 Independence avenue.
Owing to the condition of the railroad service no definite time has been set for the funeral. It will be held from the First Christian church. Rev. F. V. Lose of Liberty, Mo., will officiate. Burial is to be in the family lot at Elmwood cemetery.
Labels: churches, death, history, Independence avenue, Liberty, ministers, Monroe avenue, Native Americans, pioneers, Santa Fe Trail, University hospital, Westport
April 11, 1909
DEATH OF A PIONEER.
Dr. Thomas W. Radford Came to
Missouri in 1858.
Dr. Thomas W. Radford, 80 years old and a resident of this city since 1880, died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. George W. Matthews, 3112 Garner avenue, yesterday at noon.
Dr. Radford was born in Shelbyville, Ky. He graduated in medicine from a college in Louisville, and practiced there for several years. He was for a short time surgeon in a military school at Drenner Springs, Ky., where James G. Blaine was one of the teachers. Four years after his graduation, he decided to come West and visited Kansas City in the spring of 1858. The town didn't seem to be a good location to him then, so he moved to Fayette, Howard county, Mo., and settled there with his wife and slaves.
His practice grew, and soon he and his horse, "Physic," were well known all over the county. The war came on, but Dr. Radford did not enlist with either side, staying at home and attending to his patients, although frequently interferred with by guerillas. That Dr. Radford earned the esteem of his neighbors during these years is shown by the fact that immediately after the war he was elected three times to the office of county treasurer.
In 1880 he moved to Kansas City and opened a downtown office. He continued in practice here until fifteen years ago, when he retired. He was well known to many families in the city.
Dr. Radford attended the First Christian church for many years, but lately had been a regular communicant of the Independence Boulevard Christian church. A widow, seven children, nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren survive. One son is T. J. Radford, a druggist at Ninth and Locust streets, and another, C. M. Radford of the Radford-Powell Shoe Company.
Funeral services will be held at 3 o'clock this afternoon from the home. Burial at Elmwood cemetery.
Labels: churches, Civil War, death, doctors, druggists, Locust street, Ninth street, pioneers
April 10, 1909
EARLY KANSAS CITY SPIRIT.
The Real Turning Point in the
Destiny of Kansas City, U. S. A.
To The Journal:
In the spring of 1866 Kansas City had a population of about 3,000. The community had not yet fully recovered from the disastrous effects of the civil war. The corporation was virtually bankrupt; city "scrip," issued to meet current expenses, sold for 50 cents on the dollar.
The sheriff had exhausted his powers in trying to find property on which to levy. He had sold the furniture out of the offices in city hall -- the city scales, and even part of the market square fronting on Main street. Many old timers can easily remember when a block of one and two-story houses extended from Fifth street to the old city hall, built upon sheriff's titles.
Leavenworth, which was Kansas City's great rival, had at that time about 20,000 population and was really the"City of the West," with bright prospects, good credit and large numbers of very wealthy, public-spirited citizens.
No wonder disinterested observers saw little chance for Kansas City. but with that little chance a great opportunity preceded and followed by a fortuitous chain of events, which changed destiny. Both cities had already (before the civil war) expended considerable sums in efforts to obtain rail connection with Cameron station, about fifty miles distant, on the Hannibal & St. Joseph railroad.
During the previous session of the Missouri legislature, Kansas City had the good fortune to be represented by Colonel R. T. Van Horn, M. J. Payne and E. M. McGee, who, by their untiring industry and perseverance, and in the face of sharp opposition, secured the passage of the necessary legislation for a bridge and branch railroad.
Colonel Charles E. Kearney (who had recently returned to Kansas City from New York city, where he had engaged in the banking business, and where he had made wide acquaintance among financiers and other business men all over the United States), was made president the company , and devoted his entire time and energy until all was successfully completed.
In the meantime Colonel Van Horn had been elected to congress and was then in Washington, where he was well favorably known, and succeeded in getting such legislation as was requisite.
Colonel Van Horn was ably assisted by Colonel Kersey Coates, who was a warm personal friend of Hon. Thaddeus Stevens, who, at that time, was the recognized leader of the Republican party. Mr. Stevens, on many occasions during his career, at the insistence of Colonel Coates, had used his influence and good offices in promoting and guarding the interests of Kansas City.
On the 8th of May a public meeting was held in the city hall for the purpose of providing funds to aid the enterprise. At that meeting $60,000 in cash was raised and the city council turned over $23,000 in notes of the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company, given for the right of way of that road along the levee.
This fund became the guarantee on the part of Kansas City on going into the contract for the building of bridge and road.
Immediately after that meeting Messrs. Kearney, Case and Coates began active negotiations in Boston, New York and Detroit. The negotiations had to be conducted with great secrecy --the Leavenworth delegations were continually met, the newspapers and public men of St. Louis did everything in their power to advance, aid and assist the interests of Leavenworth and to hinder, thwart and ridicule the efforts of Kansas City.
On May 24th public announcement was made that the contract had been executed by Hon. James F. Joy of Detroit on behalf of the railroads.
From that day the tide turned in favor of Kansas City, and when the bridge was completed, some three years later, the Kansas City branch became the main line.
Many of the subscribers to this historic fund have been classed as "old fogies," and wanting in public spirit. Others were considered visionary, theoretical, impractical, but all came nobly to the front of this supreme occasion and laid the foundation that makes present conditions possible.
"They built it better than they knew."
The city afterwards, when authority had been obtained, and arrangements made for a bond issue, refunded in full the amount paid by the subscribers.
April 8, 1909
Labels: Boston, city hall, Colonel Van Horn, history, Kersey Coates, Leavenworth, New York, pioneers, railroad, St Louis
April 2, 1909
JACKSON COUNTY PIONEER
WOMAN DIES AT AGE OF 80.
Mrs. Fannie C. Twyman Was Born
at Independence and Lived
There Through the War.
Mrs. Fannie C. Twyman, one of the pioneer women of Jackson county, died at noon yesterday at the home of her son, Dr. G. T. Twyman, 402 North Pleasant street, Independence. Her illness was brief, and death was unexpected. Mrs. Twyman was 80 years of age. The funeral will take place Saturday morning at 10 o'clock from First Baptist church.
Mrs. Twyman was born at Independence, and on the 20th day of this month would have been 80 years old. She was the mother of Dr. G. T. Twyman and Frank Twyman of Independence, W. W. Twyman, Lee Twyman and Joseph Twyman of Oakland, Cal. Prior to her marriage she was Frances C. Fristoe, a daughter of Judge Richard Fristoe, one of the first judges of the county court of Jackson county. Her husband was one of the pioneer physicians of Jackson county. They were married March 22, 1848. They took up their residence in Independence for a year and then located in Pleasant Hill, afterwards returning to Jackson county and residing near Blue Millsa in the year 1850.
Mrs. Twyman was an unusually bright woman, and in earlier years was devoted to literature and religious work. She was a devout Baptist and her interest was centered in that denomination. She lived through the stirring times of civil strife in Jackson county, and her reminiscent accounts of the border warfare were entertaining to the younger generation. She and her husband suffered considerably in fortune from order No. 11, and managed to make their way to Independence in a wagon with three wheels. She was a charter member of the Baptist church, and was active in the work up to the time of her death. Her children caused to be built in the Baptist church of Independence a memorial fireplace in honor of their mother.
Labels: churches, death, Independence, pioneers
March 21, 1909
BLACKSMITH 91 YEARS OLD.
McCurdy Spends Birthday Working
at the Anvil.
John G. McCurdy, the pioneer blacksmith of Independence, celebrated his 91st birthday yesterday hard at work with his hammer and anvil. Mr. McCurdy spent his early manhood making wagons and doing blacksmith work for the outfitting trade of the Southwest. He has followed his trade ever since and every day finds him at the forge. When the court house was built in Independence in the early days Mr. McCurdy made the nails. His wife died in 1874 and since that time he has been making his home with his daughter, Mrs. Lizzie Powell, 315 North Liberty street, Independence.
Labels: birthdays, blacksmiths, Independence, pioneers, Seniors
March 4, 1909
WOMAN BEQUEATHS $1,200
TO HER NEGRO COACHMAN.
Mrs. Victoria Mostow's Will Divides
Her Estate, Worth $50,000 to
$60,000, Into Many Parts.
David Raspberry is to get about $1,200 in cash and a lot from the estate of Mrs. Victoria M. Mostow, who died at her home at 200 West Thirty-fourth street. He is a negro coachman. Mrs. Mostow was a sister of the late Dr. D'Estaing Dickerson, of of Kansas City's pioneers.
Among other bequests was one of $5,000 for funeral expenses, a cemetery lot and a monument for herself. Mrs. Mostow's estate is valued at from $50,000 to $60,000 by A. L. Cooper, who is named as administrator. Mr. Cooper was her attorney. The instrument was drawn October 27, 1908.
The property at 817 Main street, under the terms of the will which was filed yesterday for probate, is to be sold, as are also lots in the Pullman park and other property. This money is to be divided with the exception of the lot which goes to Raspberry, among her nieces, nephews, servants and friends.
Mrs. Mostow was engaged, at the time of her death, in litigation with James P. Richardson, her nephew, head of the Prosso preparatory school. She had given deeds to both him and John H. Lee to the same property and she brought suit to revoke the instruments given to her nephew, who is cut out of the will. It is directed that this litigation be continued.
Richardson alleges that Lee, who with his family, has occupied the home on West Thirty-fourth street, and cared for Mrs. Mostow, exercised an undue influence over her by saying he had communication with the planet Mars via a black cat and a superhuman gas stove.
Labels: Main street, pioneers, probate, Thirty-fourth street
February 27, 1909
WELL, WELL, IT WAS
THE OLD TOWN WELL.
ACCIDENT TO WAGON REVEALS
Supplied Part of Kansas City With
Water 44 Years Ago, When
There Were No Meters
When a heavily-laden wagon broke through the asphalt paving at the corner of Tenth and McGee streets yesterday afternoon and the rear wheels sank into a hole to the hubs little damage resulted. There was a general outpouring of reminiscences, however, from old-timers who witnessed the accident that made the incident an interesting story, for the hole into which the wheels sank is what remains of a well from which the pioneers of Kansas City obtained their drinking water in the early '70s.
Of the history of the old well, J. F. Spalding, president of the Spalding Commercial college and a pioneer of Kansas City, said:
"That hole is the old well which was sunk by Thomas Smart forty-four years ago. Smart purchased the forty acres of Ninth and Fourteenth streets and laid out an addition to Kansas City. There was a lack of good drinking water on the hill and Colonel Smart dug the well at the corner of Tenth and McGee. It was eighty feet deep and contained the finest of water. The settlers of the new addition used the water from the well for years. Finally it was abandoned and partly filled. Later it was cut down when the hill was graded for the old Tenth street cable line. Still later it was covered with an old stone slab and the pavers went right over it. I had almost forgotten about it until I saw that wagon break through there and then I recalled it at once. It was one of the city's landmarks in her infant days."
The hole caused by the wagon disclosed the walls of the old well. The pavement covering it was not more than three-quarters of an inch thick and the wonder is that it did not give away under heavy traffic before.
Labels: accident, Fourteenth street, history, McGee street, Ninth street, pioneers, Spaldings college, Tenth street
February 6, 1909
LIVED IN KANSAS CITY
OVER HALF A CENTURY.
Mrs. Ellen Cronin, Who Settled at
Second and Lydia in 1855,
After fifty-four years of residence in Kansas City, Mrs. Ellen Cronin, 77 years of age, died at her home, 1129 Pacific street, yesterday afternoon. Coming to Kansas City before the war of the Rebellion, and when the little settlement on the Missouri river was known as Westport Landing, Mrs. Cronin's life was an eventful one.
Down at Second street and Lydia avenue she lived for the first few years of her life here, and as the little landing grew into a thriving little town, rivaling Westport itself, she moved, with her husband, Patrick Cronin, and other members of her family, to the house in which she finally died.
During the civil war Mrs. Cronin stayed in Kansas City, while her husband wen to the front. Frequently she was molested by Union soldiers, especially when the notorious No. 11 was issued in Jackson county . It was no unusual thing for her to be awakened from her sleep by pillaging Union soldiers. To see men shot dead on the streets was a weekly occurrence with her and she volunteered her services as a nurse in the old army hospital which was then located where the Gilliss opera house is now.
Mrs. Cronin came to America from Ireland in a sailing vessel in the year of 1848, going directly to New York, where she joined her sister, Mary Divine. Soon the two girls, Mary and Ellen Divine, brought their mother and brother and sister to America, going from New York to Michigan, and then coming to Kansas City, where Ellen Divine met Patrick Cronin, whom she married.
Mrs. Cronin is survived by two daughters,Mrs. Harry Ashton, whose husband is lieutenant of hook and ladder company No. 8, and Mrs. J. M. Maher, whose husband is captain of truck No. 1, both of the Kansas City fire department.
No funeral arrangements have been made as yet.
Labels: Civil War, death, hospitals, immigrants, Lydia avenue, Pacific street, pioneers, Second street
January 24, 1909
GUEST LEAVING A
BANQUET HALL DIES.
E. T. HOVEY HAD BEEN THE LIFE
OF THE GATHERING.
While Bidding Goodby to Friends
at the Grand Hotel, He
Was Suddenly Fatally
At the conclusion of a banquet yesterday afternoon at the Grand hotel, Kansas City, Kas., given by A. D. Downs to a number of the old settlers of Wyandotte county, E. T. Hovey, one of the guests, dropped dead of heart trouble. He was one of the oldest residents present at the little gathering, and while recalling reminiscences of Wyandotte's early history at the dinner table appeared to be the "boy" of all the old men gathered. Apparently in the best of health and spirits, he shook hands with a number of the guests and started to leave the hotel for home. As he reached the door he was suddenly stricken and staggering back into the hotel lobby fell to the floor and died without uttering a word.
Mr. Hovey was 79 years old and had lived in Kansas City, Kas., since 1859. He was the first dry goods merchant in the old city of Wyandotte, opening a store at Fourth street and State avenue in '59 with his father-in-law, W. E. Taylor, who came here with him from New York. He remained in business from 1859 to 1873, failing during the great financial crisis of the latter year. His loss was very heavy in this failure and he had just about recuperated when he was again caught by the collapse of the boom in the latter '80's. Since then he has lived more or less of a retired life.
Mr. Hovey's death is the first break in his family, his wife, Mrs. Anna Taylor Hovey, four sons and two daughters, surviving him, all of whom live in the city. The children are E. A., W. T., J. J., A. L., Nellie and Alice Hovey. A sister, Mrs. E. J. Jones, 84 years old, is living in New York.
For forty-five years the deceased had been an active member o the Masonic order, and was the oldest member of Wyandotte lodge No. 3. When he made his first trip to this city he came by boat from Cincinnati, there being no railroads running into the city at that time. Three years ago he celebrated his golden wedding anniversary.
Arrangements for the funeral have not been made, but he will be buried with Masonic honors. The body was taken to the home, 630 Orville avenue.
Labels: death, history, hotels, Kansas City Kas, pioneers
December 8, 1908
J. S. CHICK, PIONEER
MERCHANT, IS DEAD.
HE FOUNDED THE FIRST BANK
IN KANSAS CITY.
Widely Known for His Integrity and
Honor in Business Affairs.
Funeral Will Be Held
Joseph Smith Chick, founder of the first bank in this city and for fifty years a citizen here, died at his home, 1039 Brooklyn avenue, at 4:30 yesterday morning. He had been ill several months, although he went to his offices until last week.
Mr. Chick was born in Howard county, Mo., August 3, 1828. His parents were from Virginia and the family lived on a farm. In 1830 the family moved to the town of Westport. Mr. Chick's father, Colonel William M. Chick, was one of the early purchasers of the original site on which Kansas City was built. At the time the family moved to Westport there were not a half a dozen families in Kansas City, called then Westport Landing. Joseph Chick went to the Westport schools, but at the age of 18 years put away his books and went into business. He became a clerk in the general store of H. M. Northrup, the largest shop of its kind in the town of Westport Landing. He worked hard and faithfully and in 1852 was admitted to a partnership in the firm.
Soon afterwards he and his partner conceived the idea of operating a bank in Kansas City and established one under the name of H. M. Northrup & Co. The company also took some interest in the trade across the plains to Santa Fe and in the year 1861 Mr. Chick and Mr. Northrup, with their wives, made the trip over the Santa Fe trail to trade with the Indians.
BANKING IN NEW YORK.
The next year, on account of the unsettled conditions prevailing, the company gave up its business in Kansas City and removed to New York, where they established a bank under the name of Northrup & Chick, on Wall street. For eleven years they continued in that city but in 1874 Mr. Chick sold out his interest and removed to this city, where he associated himself with some of the wealthy business men of the city and organized the Bank of Kansas City. In 1888 this institution was merged with the National Bank of Kansas City and Mr. Chick was chosen president, a position he held until the dissolution of the firm in 1895. Since then he had been in the real estate business with his son.
Mr. Chick was also connected with the St. Louis and Missouri River Telegraph Company, built to Kansas City in 1851; the Missouri Pacific Railroad, the macadamized road from Westport to the city, the first telephone company, the Kansas City Electric Light Company and the National Loan & Trust Company. He was once president of the board of trade.
For many years Mr. Chick had lived in the house where he died. Immediately after his return from New York he bought a large plot of ground in that neighborhood, ten acres facing on the street that is now Brooklyn avenue. Mr. Chick gave the street its present name after the city that he made his home when a banker in New York.
Since his early youth Mr. Chick was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, South, and a faithful attendant at church services. For the last twenty-five years he had been the president of the board of stewards of the Central Methodist Episcopal church.
MRS. CHICK IS ILL.
Mr. Chick was married to Miss Julia Sexton of Howard county in 1855. Mrs. Chick is 76 years old. She is dangerously ill and may not survive her husband for long.
Two children survive, Joseph S. Chick, Jr., and Mrs. E. E. Porterfield, wife of Judge Porterfield, and three grandchildren, Mrs. Robert G. Caldwell, who lives in Indianapolis, Ind., E. E. Porterfield, Jr., and Miss Julia C. Porterfield.
The funeral services will be held Wednesday afternoon at 2 o'clock from the home. Burial will be in Mount Washington cemetery. The active pallbearers will be selected from Mr. Chick's nephews.
In both his public and his private life Mr. Chick bore the reputation for exemplary character. His business integrity was above reproach, and when the bank with which he was connected failed in 1895 on account of hard times, Mr. Chick assumed the task of paying off the debt. Five years ago the last dollar was paid, together with 8 per cent interest on the money. He was always benevolent in disposition and had given an efficient business training to many young men now scattered in many states. His bearing was erect and his address cheerful. He was beloved by many, and liked by all who knew him.
Labels: banking, Brooklyn avenue, cemetery, churches, death, history, Judge Porterfield, Mt. Washington, New York, pioneers, railroad, real estate, retailers, Santa Fe Trail, telephone, Utilities, Westport
December 3, 1908
SIXTY YEARS THEY'VE
COL. R. T. VAN HORN AND WIFE
Men Who Helped Him Lay Founda-
tion of This City 50 Years and
More Ago, Gather to
Wish Them Well.
Feasting upon memories of the many years gone by, scores of "during the war" pioneers of Kansas City enjoyed the gathering at the home of Colonel R. T. Van Horn in honor of his sixtieth wedding anniversary, yesterday afternoon.
The large home at Honeywood, Evanston station, was crowded throughout the day and many groups of gray haired men selected quiet corners to pass the gossip of years, and to count grandchildren. stories of the distant past were recounted as if they happened but yesterday. Everybody was so many years young. Nobody was old.
Colonel Van Horn, 84 years young, was the leader in all the reminiscences.
"Don't you remember, George, that little incident on the steamboat Perry, when my wife paid me such a high compliment? he asked of George L. Andrews, one of the old-timers.
"Of course I do," replied Mr. Andrews, and his eyes twinkled merrily at the recollection. "That was forty years ago. You and I were standing on the deck when John Conover called up and held out a knife to us, saying it was for the best looking man."
"And you tried to take it the first thing," put in the colonel. "But that wouldn't do. So we called my wife up to let her decide the matter, and you got the knife."
Then there was a laugh from all, and one story led to another. Things long forgotten were discussed once more and little stories brought long unrecollected incidents to mind, and the gray heads would nod enthusiastically as familiar names were called.
BUT IT WAS GOLD.
"It was in J. Q. Watkins's little brick bank down on First and Main streets that I saw my first gold brick," said C. N. Brooks. "A tall, thin and hungry looking man brought it up to the bank one day and got off the black and white mule he was and handed the gold over to J. Q. It was real gold, too, and how we fellows did stare. The whole street was lined with people who wanted just a glimpse of that brick."
From the little red brick bank the old men turned their attention to the afternoons spent in the rear part of Mike Dively's grocery store at Third and Main streets, and Mr. Diveley was one of them who brought back the happy memories.
Interest in the afternoon's impromptu entertainment was just at its height when the front door opened and Thomas McNabb entered. With McNabb came visions of the prayer meeting night long ago, in the Baptist church, which was located at Missouri avenue and Walnut street. It was in that little church that McNabb was wont to sing hymns every night, and it was the gathering place of all the young couples at that time.
"One night just after prayer meeting was over," began McNabb after he had gone the rounds of handshaking and congratulations, and had joined the group of old-timers. "I remember that a fire broke out in a little store owned by Alex Holland here. I had just got through singing a solo about meeting again, and Frank Foster, the chief of the fire department -- that hand-cart, volunteer brigade; you remember it boys --had been to church. He leapt up and ran to the old fire house at Second and Walnut streets singing 'God Be With You Till We Meet Again.' And so we all joined in and helped to save Alex a few dollars."
TALES OF OTHER FIRES.
Stories of that one fire brought to the mind other conflagrations in which Mr. Foster, now dead, played a prominent part. Some of the old volunteers were present at the reception yesterday afternoon, and many a hearty laugh was had over some amusing adventures. Frank and Walter Withers figured largely in some of the amusing stories.
And so the afternoon was spent by the old men -- once more as boys. Gray hair and wrinkles were forgotten, and no one noticed an occasional trembling of hands or the thinness of voice which had come over many of those present. It was seldom that so many of the old pioneers could get together that they might live over more of the pleasant days when they were young, and the gathering yesterday was immensely enjoyed.
The Old Men's Club went out to Honeywood, as did some of the McPherson post of the G. A. R. And Colonel Van Horn and his wife were the recipients of scores of hearty congratulations. E. S. Jewett and wife have had the pleasure of attending the twenty-fifth, fiftieth and sixtieth anniversaries of Colonel and Mrs. Van Horn, and they said that never before has such a gathering been held upon such an occasion in Kansas City.
Light refreshments were served at the informal reception, consisting of coffee and sandwiches. Colonel Van Horn and his wife were exuberant in their good, old-fashioned hospitality.
Labels: boats, churches, Colonel Van Horn, Fire, First street, history, Main street, marriage, pioneers, reunions, Seniors, Third street
May 15, 1908
HE WALKS WITH THE
GHOSTS OF LONG AGO.
THOMAS REYNOLDS VISITS INDE-
PENDENCE AFTER 55 YEARS.
Ran Away When a Boy and Comes
Back to Find the Old Playfel-
lows -- "They Are All
Dead," Says He.
After the absence of fifty-five years Thomas Reynolds returned to Independence yesterday to refresh the memories of his youth. When 13 years of age he ran away, going West, and yesterday attempted to locate some of the old familiar spots, some of the old playgrounds.
"There was an old well here," said he, pointing to the southwest corner of the square, but some of the old inhabitants had even forgotten it. "I guess I am lost, or rather I am like the Indian when he came back to the old camping ground. 'Indian lost?' was asked of the brave. 'Indian not; wigwam lost,' was the answer of the Indian. That is my fix. Where is the Nebraska house?" No one knew until he ran up against James Peacock, a '49er, who told him that it, too, had changed and was now known as the Metropolitan hotel.
Mr. Reynolds is a son of Joseph Reynolds, long since dead and known only to a few of the older citizens of the old town. "I left Independence in 1853 and have never been back since. I just want to wander around the old town and see if it is possible after a half-century for a man to locate the old familiar places. There is no use talking, it gives me a strange feeling to come back to this place after having pictured in my mind for fifty years or more certain playgrounds. Then another thing -- nearly everybody I knew is dead, that is the worst of it. If I could come back and find them as they were there there would be some satisfaction, but they are gone.
"THERE WAS OLD MR. BEATTY."
"I suppose everybody who has been away from his old home for fifty years and goes back has the same experience. No doubt more than one man has gone up against just what I am doing today. There was old Mr. Beatty, who did business in jewelry away back there; how I remember he kicked a stovepipe hat with a brick in it and then sent for me to come and nurse him. I went over to see his son today -- the old man is dead, died many years ago, they told me. Judge Woodson, too, has passed away, and I met his son, a gray haired gentleman, today.
"I remember James Peacock. He left for the California gold fields before I, as a boy, left for Oregon. Nathaniel Landis is gone; in fact, they are all gone. Away over on that hill yonder," said Mr. Reynolds, "there used to be a house. A man named Wilson lived there; had a boy named Rufus. The old gentleman is gone, but his boy is older than I am. I remember Aubrey and his famous ride. Aubrey made two from Santa Fe. It was a great event. Then another fellow came through on a mule. Both of them went to sleep, the mule and the rider. That mule was the hardest thing to awaken I ever saw. No amount of kicking would bring him back to earth, and the man on top of him was sitting there astride and as fast asleep as the mule he rode. That was in front of the old Noland house. Place is all gone now.
"A SAD DAY FOR ME."
"I tell you, this is a sad day for me. Shatters all of the old-time pictures I have been carrying about with me in memory for fifty-five years. Sometimes I wished I had stayed away. Does not pay for an old man to do this way. I went down to the jail. Used to have a jailer in there every day or two, but the jail they have there now was built in 1859 and the old one is torn down. William Head is dead; his son is with the Metropolitan now. Very little satisfaction in coming back except to shatter youthful pleasures; it will do that all right enough."
Mr. Reynolds passed the entire day trying to place himself, and occasionally met with some of the passing generation of old men and then they would fall to chatting over things which belong to another generation several times removed. He visited the old home place of his father, Joseph Reynolds, one of the early day settlers.
Mr. Reynolds lives at Salem, Ore., where he is connected with the Wells-Fargo Express Company, having been with that company in the overland express business and later in the mail service.
Labels: California, history, Independence, Native Americans, nurses, pioneers, Seniors, visitors
May 13, 1908
HAD LIVED HERE 58 YEARS.
Francis Phillips, a Jackson County
Pioneer, Is Dead.
A citizen of Jackson county since 1850, Francis Phillips, father of Captain Thomas Phillips, license inspector, died yesterday at the home of the latter, aged 90 years.
Mr. Phillips was a native of Monahan county, Ireland, and came direct from there to Independence. On a farm one mile north of that city he lived for forty-five years and eighteen years ago came to Kansas City to reside with his son. Three other children survive him: Mrs. E. J. Cannon and Mrs. George Brangin of this city, and Frank Phillips, living near Olathe, Kas., who was formerly a member of the Missouri legislature.
The burial is to be in Independence cemetery tomorrow forenoon, after services at the home, 3540 Central street, at 8:30 o'clock, and at St. Aloysius church, Eleventh street and Prospect avenue, at 9:30 o'clock.
Labels: cemetery, Central street, churches, death, Eleventh street, immigrants, Independence, Olathe, pioneers, Prospect avenue
May 2, 1908
MEEKER'S WORK NOT IN VAIN.
Receives Word That Committee Fa-
vors Marking Oregon Trail.
Ezra Meeker, the pioneer, who has spent much of his time in endeavoring to get congress to make an appropriation to mark the old Oregon trail, received a telegram from Congressman Humphrey at Washington yesterday to the effect that the house committee had reported favorably on a bill appropriating $50,000 for the purpose. Mr. Meeker will write a brief history of the trail to be incorporated in the committee report.
Labels: pioneers, Seniors, telegram
April 9, 1908
HISTORY OF KANSAS CITY JEWS.
Mrs. Ethel Feineman Writes of Early
Settlers in Reform Advocate.
In the last issue of the Reform Advocate, a Jewish magazine published in Chicago, there appears an interesting article by Miss Ethel Feineman of this city, styled, "A History of the Jews of Kansas City." The article is liberally illustrated, with cuts showing buildings and views of the city, and a fine picture of Convention hall adorns the cover of the page.
Beginning with a brief history of the founding of the city, Miss Feineman goes at once into he subject with sketches of the pioneers among the Jews and shows how active this race has been in the development of this commercial center.
The Jews became identified with Kansas City as early as 1851, when Meyer Kayser and Moses Wolf settled here. M. Eisbach and W. J. Friedsam followed these two later in the same year, and the next year welcomed Herman Ganz. M. Waidsuer and Louis Rothschild. Mr. Ganz still makes this city his home.
B. A. Feineman, Miss Ethel's father, is another one of the old settlers who helped to make history For some years previous to the organization of the the Congregation B'Nai Jehudah, the Jews maintained a temple in which services were held twice a year, but in the fall of 1870, the first congregation was organized and Rabbi M. R. Cohen was called as minister. The Jewish Burial Association was also merged into this congregation. The congregation now has a magnificent house of worship at Oak and Eleventh streets, as have the Keneseth-Israel synagogue, the Tavares-Israel, and the Gomel-Chased congregations in other parts of the city. They also maintain several charitable institutions, and are in many ways interested in philanthropic work.
Among the leaders of the women are mentioned Mrs. H. H. Meyer, Mrs. Leo Lyon, Mrs. Helen Leavitt, Miss L. Hammerslough and Mrs. Ida M. Block. Excellent portraits with brief sketches are given of some thirty or forty of the leaders in society and church work.
Labels: Chicago, churches, Convention Hall, Eleventh street, history, Jews, ministers, Oak street, pioneers, race, women
March 5, 1908
WIDOW OF PIONEER DIES.
Mrs. Mary Egan Leaves Twenty-Two
Mrs. Mary Egan, widow of Thomas Egan, one of the pioneer residents of Kansas City, died last night at the home of her daughter, Mrs. John F. Ward, 3037 Main street. Mr. Egan died about three months ago.
Mrs. Egan was 70 years old and had lived in Kansas City for the last forty-five years. Her husband was interested in the building of the first street railway lines in Kansas City and was a prominent figure in the early days. She is survived by three daughters, twenty-two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, every one of whom lives in Kansas City. The three daughters are Mrs. John F. Ward, Mrs. Michael Gormon and Mrs. John Gorman.
Labels: death, Main street, pioneers, streetcar
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