Illinois Genealogy Trails
Montgomery County, Illinois

ALLEN, Arthur N.
Conspicuously identified with the financial interests of Neosho county and the city of Chanute is the cashier of the First National bank, Arthur N. Allen, the subject of this review. He has been a part of the business life of Chanute since 1885 when he came here from the east and entered the real estate and loan office of R. N. Allen as a clerk. Since that date his connection with the business life of the city has grown in importance and prominence as promotion has come to home from time to time until he has reached the position of second rank in the leading financial concern of Neosho county. The subject of this notice was born in Mount Vernon, Indiana, November 13, 1866, and is a son of Arthur P. Allen, of Erie, Kansas. He finished his education in the Hillsboro, Illinois, high school and the year of his graduation witnessed his advent to Chanute. In 1888 he entered the First National bank as book-keeper and in two years was made assistant cashier of the institution. He filled that position till 1901 when he was promoted to his present position of cashier. The First National bank was chartered in 1888 and began business in November of that year with R. N. Allen as president, E. E. Ward as vice president, and R. L. Nay as cashier. R. N. Allen was succeed by J. W. McDonald as president in October, 1901; the vice presidents since Ward have been Jeffries, Dildine and Kennedy, while Mr. Nay, the cashier gave way to Mr. Kennedy in 1890 and eleven years later A. N. Allen moved up to the position. The institution is capitalized for fifty thousand dollars and has a surplus and undivided profits of fifteen thousand dollars. For thirteen years Mr. Allen has been city treasurer and for eleven years he served as secretary of the Chanute Building and Loan association. He is a director of the Driving Park Association and a Republican in politics. He was married October 28, 1896, to Miss Nettie M. Cross, a daughter of the late John A. Cross, editor and proprietor of the Chanute Blade. Mr. Allen is a Mason and an Odd Fellow and a gentleman whose interest in the welfare of his town is marked and well defined. He is one of the cheerful contributors to meritorious and deserving enterprises and it is to men of that class that the Oil City of Kansas owes its stability and promise. [Source: History of Neosho and Wilson Counties, Kansas, Pub. by L. Wallace Duncan, Fort Scott, Kansas, Monitor Printing Co., 1902; tr. by VB]

BEHEN, John Joseph, president Behen Automobile Equipment Co.; born: Litchfield, ILL, Oct. 2, 1873; son of Simon and Mary (Farley) Behen; educated in public schools of Litchfield; married, Litchfield, Sept. 11, 1905, Frances S. Faught; one child: May Frances. Began as messenger boy, Wabash R. R., Litchfield, at age of fourteen, and remained in railway service until 1905; was identified with the Carnegie Steel Co., at St. Louis, 1905-11. In March, 1906, organized and became president of the Behen-Faught Motor Car Equipment Co.; president of the U. S. Pump and Tank Company, 1909-11; manager of Faught Estate September, 1906-11, as curator of estate in probate; in September, 1905, organized the Behen Automobile Equipment Co., of which is president. Was one of the organizers of the St. Louis Automobile Manufacturers' and Dealers' Association, the St. Louis Motors Accessories Association; an organizer and chairman of the Automobile Show Committee, 1908 and 1909. Recreations: golf, motoring, fishing. Office: 702 N. Kings highway. Residence: 2127 Waterman Ave.
(Source: "The Book of St. Louisans", Publ. 1912. Transcribed by Charlotte Slater)

BLACKWELDER, George H., real estate; born in Montgomery Co., ILL., Jan. 19, 1849; son of Peter and Nellie (Scherer) Blackwelder; educated in public schools and Hillsboro Academy, Hillsboro, ILL., and at Illinois State University; married, Hillsboro, Oct. 18, 1877, Ida K. Miller (died Apr. 2, 1906); children: Bertha, Edith (now Mrs. Frank Soule), Lucille. Began real estate business on own account at Hillsboro, ILL., 1869, and continued until 1884; moved to Wichita, Kan., 1884, and associated with Mr. W. J. Holbrook in firm of Blackwelder & Holbrook until 1892, when firm removed to St. Louis, and afterwards was incorporated, 1901, as the Holbrook-Blackwelder Real Estate Trust Co. (now having capital and surplus of $1,250,000), of which he has been secretary and treasurer from organization. Member of Real Estate Exchange. Republican. Office: 812 Olive St. Residence: Buckingham Hotel.
(Source: "The Book of St. Louisans", Publ. 1912. Transcribed by Charlotte Slater)

Katie Crowell Still Cooking At The Hut
Montgomery County News, 7 Mar 1985
Catherine "Katie" Dixon Crowell at 89 was a 4 foot 10 inch bundle of energy who was the owner, cook, and heart of the restaurant call the Hut. Some say she baked the best pies in the world. [b. Dec 1895 d. 07 Mar 1991]
Katie was born in a small place call Backwards in North Umberland, England [to William and Jane Dixon] and came to Springfield IL with her family in 1905. Her father and two other men from England came to Springfield to open a coal mine.
After living in Springfield for 15 years, the family moved to Sorento for about 10 years and then to Panama.
On 29 Mar 1918, Katie married [Arthur Crowell] at the Hillsboro courthouse. He got a job at the radiator plant and they moved to Litchfield. Katie worked in a grocery store for Mr Yowell for about 4 years. When the store closed, she went to work at the Litchfield Hotel [corner of Ryder and Madison] coffee shop waiting tables for about 5 years. Her mother worked there as a chambermaid for many years also.
When they moved Katie to the kitchen, Marie Timmons taught her how to cook. Marie had been a cook for years and taught her how to make pies and cook meat - everything she needed to know. About 5 years later, Katie went to work for Harold Morgan and later Heidie Orr at the Saratoga.
When Rex Gilly had to go to the Army, he offered Katie a lunchroom in his tavern on State Street and she opened Katies Place where she served soups and sandwiches. About 4 years later, she moved to Harkeys Tavern, [owned by Ray and Anna Harkey], across from the shoe factory. After about 2 years, Otto Striegel came up to her and said he had just the place for her to buy - The Hut. They were asking $2500 for it and she said she wouldn't give more than $2000.
When Katie bought the Hut it was only a counter with 6 stools and 2 tables. Dishes were washed in double tubs with hot soap water in one and scalding water in the other. Before she opened on May 31, 1949, she added a kitchen with a new stove and sinks and covered the floors. She also added 20 more seats in the dining area.
Every morning she made pies - usually 4 full pies and 3 soft pies. Besides her pies the menu included macaroni and cheese, roast beef, roast pork, meatloaf, ham and beans, and sandwiches, soups, etc. - I remember eating there - no place like it.
At one time there were 4 trains every day - two each way and they would stop down the tracks and eat at the Hut.
John Auble a St Louis TV personality did show about Katie and the Hut which brought her customers from many different locals.
Katie and Arthur had two daughters Eileen Timmons and Laureen Green and one son, Billy.
[Montgomery County News, 7 Mar 1985 - Submitted by Lynn Reener (Note: This is a lengthy article. If you have an interest in Katie or the Hut, you may want to read the whole thing.)]



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