Atchison County, Kansas


James Adkins was elected as a pro-slavery candidate from Atchison. He was born in South Carolina and was very bitter in his feelings. His name appears in the journal only as absent or not voting. It is probable he never attended a session. In the early days he lived on a farm near Port Williams. He was appointed sheriff of Atchison county, September 5, 1856, serving until April, 1857. The record also shows that he had been appointed third lieutenant of the Kickapoo Rangers, July 28, 1856. He lived in Atchison county six or seven years and then moved to Nebraska City, Neb. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 208)


William Prentiss Badger was born December 15, 1818, at Tamworth, N. H. He was educated in the common schools and read medicine, and was much interested in scientific matters. He came to Kansas in 1857, and settled at the site of old Muscotah, two miles northeast of the present town. He was a member of the territorial legislature of 1857-58; agent of the Kickapoo Indians from September 1, 1858, to May 31, 1861; regimental adjutant of the Thirteenth Kansas; mayor of Muscotah for several terms and commander of McFarland Post. He married Chloe Eaton Kellogg, of Montpelier, Vt., a sister of William Pitt Kellogg. They had three children, all of whom are now dead. Mr. Badger was a hatter by trade, with a large business in Montpelier, and gave it up to come to Kansas on account of lung trouble. He died at Muscotah the day after the general election in November, 1896. On the 1st of February, 1858, Badger was unseated and his seat given to Archibald P. Elliott. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 208)


Francis Steadman Ball, lawyer, was born at Hiawatha, Kansas, September 20, 1904, son of Luke Steadman and Frances Edna (Wilson) Ball. Luke Steadman Ball was born at Marshalltown, Iowa, September 19, 1871, and died at Hiawatha, November 17, 1931. Frances Edna Wilson was born at Plattsmouth, Nebraska, January 21, 1884 and now resides at Hiawatha.

Francis Steadman Ball attended public and high school at Hiawatha, and in 1926 received the Bachelor of Arts degree from Washburn College. He received the degree of Doctor of Jurisprudence from Washburn School of Law in 1928. At Washburn, Mr. Ball was a member of the student council for two years, editor of the Washburn Review, 1927-28, was graduated from college with honors and with high honors from law school. He is a member of Tau Delta Pi, Pi Gamma Mu, Phi, Delta Theta, and Delta, Theta Phi.

On October 26, 1929, he was married to Eleanor Margaret Campbell at Topeka. Mrs. Ball, who is the daughter of Frank L. and Nellie (Brown) Campbell, was born in Topeka, February 23, 1904. Mr. and Mrs. Ball have one daughter, Mary Louise, born March 5, 1932.

Mr. Ball is a member of the Atchison County, Kansas State, and American Bar Associations, and the Commercial Law League of America. He is advisor at the present time for the Washington chapter of the Order of DeMolay and is a Mason. He is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church of Atchison, is a member of the Young Men's Christian Association and the Chamber of Commerce. Residence: Atchison. (pages 66 & 67)


John Bennett, of Atchison County, was born in Gallatin County, Kentucky, in 1805. he died at Atchison, Kan., December 17, 1890. He was educated at Madison, Ind. He came to Kansas in the fall of 1855 and settled at Atchison. He was married in 1832 to Susan Parks, by whom he had seven children. Mrs. Imogine Challis of Atchison is the only one surviving. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 209)


Benjamin H. Brock, of Atchison county, was born in Virginia, April 4, 1808. He died near Troy, Kan., April 11, 1893. He was educated at Athens, Ohio. He came to Kansas in October, 1854 and settled in Doniphan County. He married, April 23,1 833, Elizabeth Caples by whom he had five children. Mrs. Mary Brock Montgomery of Troy, Kan., is the only one surviving. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 209)


Joseph P. Carr of Atchison county, was a lawyer by profession, and was commissioned as paymaster, Third regiment northern division, Kansas militia. May 13,1866. He was elected as a Democrat, and apparently resigned without taking his seat. In his letter of resignation to Governor Denver, under date of January 28,1868, he says: "I could be of no benefit whatever to my constituents, and it is but right, if they wish the seat occupied, to give them an opportunity of filling it." His resignation was accepted, and Governor Denver issued a proclamation calling an election for February 8, 1868, to fill such vacancy. Luther C. Challis. of Atchison was elected. Mr. Carr was a member of the railroad convention of 1860 from Atchison county. He went south at the beginning of the civil war, and was later known to be in Buffalo, N. Y. He died at Louisville. Ky. in the early '80's.. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 205)


Luther C. Challis of Atchison county, elected to the seat in the territorial council made vacant by the resignation of Joseph P. Carr, was born at Imlaystown, N. J., January 26, 1828. He was apprenticed to the mercantile business in Philadelphia. After remaining there some years he went to Boonville, Mo., where he lived for a time. In 1855 he moved into Kansas and was among the first permanent settlers of Atchison, joining his brother in a general merchandising trade. He afterwards became a banker; also maintained a ferry across the Missouri river until the building of the bridge, in 1876. He is generally conceded to be the father of the Central Branch Union Pacific railway enterprise, having framed the bill to authorize its construction, secured its passage, and negotiated the treaty with the Kickapoo Indians. He was also one of the incorporators of the Atchison & St Joseph railway, the first railroad built in the state, and of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe railway. He died in Atchison, July 26, 1884. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 205)


Archibald Elliott, of Atchison, at an evening session February 1, was given the seat occupied by William P. Badger, the finding being that the latter did not have a majority. Mr. Elliott lived about seven miles southwest of Atchison on a farm. He was born in South Carolina and came to Kansas from Missouri. The record shows he was fifty-four years old in 1861. He died on his farm about 1866. He left two sons, who sold the farm and went south. A friend writes the Historical Society: "I knew old Father Elliott well. He was also a member of the Kansas state legislature (1861) that elected James H. Lane and S. C. Pomeroy to the United States senate. He voted for both of them. General Lane was at the old Massasoit House about a year and a half after he had been elected and sworn in. Mr. Elliott called on him and told him farming was a poor business for an old man like him and Lane said, "Mr. Elliott, every man who voted for me has got a good government position but you and one other, and your commissions are on the way." Mr. Elliott was a good old man - a staunch free-state man, and a Jim Lane man all over. Only a few days after all that talk Mr. Elliott was walking around town as a government secret detective - with a nice per diem salary attached and nothing to do; a perfect sinecure." (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 210)


Augustus Byram, member of the house of representatives of 1868, from Atchison, was born in Kentucky. He came to Kansas from Nebraska City, where he was in the employ of Russell Majors & Waddell, freighters and continued with them until their failure in 1863, when he purchased some of their equipment and with his brother, Peter Byram, started in the freighting business on his own account. He invested in mines in Utah, and at one time owned an interest in the famous Horn silver mine, the sale of which brought him six million dollars. He moved to Chicago in the '80's and later died there. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 269)

John Moses Price was born at Richmond, Ky., October 4, 1829. He studied law, and in March, 1849, was admitted to the bar and immediately began the practice of his profession. He was married to Eliza park, January 10, 1854 and in 1858 they came to Kansas, locating at Atchison. In 1859, upon the resignation of A. G. Otis as judge of the district court, Mr. Price was appointed to fill the vacancy, and held the office until statehood. He was a member of the state senate of 1687-68, 1871-72, and 1893-95 and served in the house of 1879. His death occurred, after a lingering illness, October 19,1898. (Transactions of the Kansas State Historical Society 1907-1908, Vol. X, edited by Geo. W. Martin, Secretary, State Printing Office, Topeka, 1908, page 267)


Edgar Watson Howe, journalist and author, was born at Treaty, Wabash county, Indiana, May 3, 1854, son of Henry and Elizabeth (Irwin) Howe. In 1857 the Howe family moved to Harrison county, Missouri, where Edgar was educated in the common schools until twelve years of age, when he began working in his father's printing office. Henry Howe, a Methodist minister, was described as a "fierce abolitionist" and published a paper at Bethany, Mo. At the age of fourteen the strict discipline of his erratic father became too much for the
spirit of the boy, and he left home. E. W. Howe is next heard of in Golden, Col., as editor and publisher of the "Weekly Globe," at the age of eighteen. A year or two afterward he was connected with a paper at Falls City, Neb., where, in 1875, he married Miss Clara L. Frank. Five children were born to them, and three are living. In 1877, Mr. Howe came to Atchison, Kan., where he established the "Atchison Globe." This paper was not long in finding its way to recognition among the newspapers of Kansas, on account of the personality injected into it by its editor, and for more than thirty-four years it has been one of the most widely quoted publications in the whole country. The recent edition of the Encyclopedia Brittanica refers to it. Mr. Howe has the happy faculty of being personal in his comments without giving offense. The informal way of dealing with matters in his paper has always been relished by Kansans and has attracted favorable comment in the more conventional parts of the country. The magazines, in reproducing some of his refreshing paragraphs, have referred to "Ed." Howe, as the best country-town newspaper reporter in America. He has the faculty of seeking the points overlooked by the majority and of working them up into paragraphs having a combination of sarcasm and good humor that is irresistible.

Mr. Howe's first work of fiction was "The Story of a Country Town," published in 1882, which has been for more than a quarter of a century among the standard books of America. It has been classed by such eminent critics as William Dean Howells as one of the ten best American novels. The "Chicago Times-Herald," in a mention of this book, pronounced Mr. Howe the strongest American novelist, and even the conservative "Edinburgh Review," which never allows itself to be guilty of flattery, contained highly complimentary notices of "The Story of a Country Town" and its author. This book did not run its course, as the average popular novel does; its human interest has given lasting hold on the public. Other works of fiction which Mr. Howe has since written are: "The Moonlight Boy," "The Mystery of the Locks," "An Ante-Mortem Statement" and "The Confession of John Whitlock." His "Lay Sermons" contain a great deal of good sound philosophy of life, and from the pages of this book may be deducted a very practical code of ethics. In 1900, at the time Dr. Sheldon edited the "Daily Capital," in Topeka, for a week, in the way he thought Christ would do, Mr. Howe added to the gaiety of nations by accepting an invitation from the "Topeka State Journal" and running it for a week the way he thought the Devil would run a newspaper.

In 1906 Mr. Howe made a long trip abroad, which resulted in "Daily Notes of a Trip Around the World," in two volumes, which has been praised, as highly as any other book of travel in recent years. Two years later he wrote "The Trip to the West Indies," as a result of a winter cruise. His latest book is "Country Town Sayings," a collection of his paragraphs in the "Atchison Globe."

Mr. Howe's country home at Atchison is one of the most carefully and artistically arranged homes in the state. It is a bungalow, overlooking what is said to be one of the three finest views in Kansas. It was built by its owner as a place to retire when he became old, as he believes that too many old people stand around in other people's way. True to his instinct for the unusual he named it "Potato Hill." At the early age of fifty-six he concluded that he was old, made an announcement to that effect through the press, retired from the management and editorship of the "Atchison Globe," and went to Potato Hill. It was predicted by those familiar with his tireless energy as a newspaper man that he would soon be back at his desk in the "Globe" office, but such was not the case. After revising "The Story of a Country Town" for the stage, he began the publication of "Howe's Monthly," which, within a few months, became the western rival of the "Phillistine," published at East Aurora, and is considered by many to have outclassed Elbert Hubbard's magazine. The Ed. Howe paragraphs have been syndicated and appear in the leading dailies of the country. In an attempt to account for the popularity of these paragraphs and the other writings of Mr. Howe, Walt Mason, in the "American Magazine." says "There is always, in everything Ed. Howe writes, the element of the unexpected. It is present in all his books-one of which ranks with the best in American fiction-and it is in his briefest paragraph, and that is why he is inimitable. Others may adopt his style and mannerisms, but they can't borrow the strange, original intelligence that eternally ignores the obvious and seizes upon the bizarre, showing how much of the bizarre there is in everyday commonplace life."

The personality of Mr. Howe, as described by those who know him best, is that of a quiet, courteous gentleman, amiable and kind to all. His patience in teaching the young reporter, and his indulgent ignoring of the mistakes of his office force, have been frequently remarked upon. It is said that he never discharged anyone, but always assisted them to make good. To those who have been associated with him he is a greater man than he is to those who only know him through the printed page, and the longer and closer the acquaintance, the more remarkable seems his genius. (Kansas Biography, Vol. III, Part 2, Page 803-805, Transcribed by: Millie Mowry)


Peter Risdon Moore, M. D., one of the oldest physicians of Atchison county, who had to face his full share of the dangers and hardships when both he and the state were young and who had to endure the many discouragements and privations incident to life in a new country, is one of the adopted sons to whom the state may point with pride. He is a Hoosier by birth, as he first saw the light of day at Belville, Ind., July 23, 1845, son of Dr. Smith Goldsbery and Elizabeth (Garrett) Moore. His father was a native of North Carolina, born near New Salem, and when twelve years of age removed to Indiana. He was one of the restless men who made up the early pioneer population of the country and made possible the phenomenally rapid settlement of the country west of the Alleghany mountains. He located in Indiana at an early day when that state was still "the West" to residents of the Seaboard States, and there he studied medicine and engaged in the practice of his profession. In 1846, when the settlers began to crowd close to him, the Doctor again moved and settled in Adams county, Illinois. During the late '50s, when the country rang with the wrongs of Kansas and the struggle the people of the territory were making to have the state admitted free, many emigrants came from the North and East to help the cause. In 1857 Dr. Moore joined the mighty army of occupation that poured into the territory and remained for five years, when he returned to Illinois. He was laid to rest in that state, in 1872. Mrs. Moore still survives and resides with her son, Shildes G., at old Pardee, in Atchison county, at the hearty old age of eighty-eight years.

Peter R. Moore was a baby when his parents removed from Indiana, and he spent his boyhood days in Illinois and Kansas, where he attended the frontier public schools, which may not have been much as far as equipment was concerned, but they were most thorough, and the boys and girls who learned the "three R's" in the log school houses have usually turned out to be responsible and successful men and women of affairs. After completing his elementary education the boy determined to devote his life to the study of medicine and began to read with his father. The instruction of this excellent preceptor was cut short by the hand of death, and he finished under another old and reliable physician. In 1874 he passed the medical examination, was admitted to practice and at once came to Kansas hand located in Pardee, Atchison county, where he continued in active practice of his profession until 1888, when he located in Effingham. For some years he met with the
difficulties that every young professional man meets at the beginning of his career, but he was enthusiastic in his work, found no call too far to respond to, and soon had the confidence, of the people. As the country has settled up, so in proportion has the Doctor's business grown, until he is regarded as one of the most prosperous members of the medical profession in Atchison county. He is loved by the older residents; to whom he has ministered for years, while the younger generation, have confidence in him as a man of wide experience. A man of broad mind, kind heart, and generous to a fault, he is one of the most popular men in Effingham. Dr. Moore belongs to the Atchison County Medical Society, the Kansas State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. He has never taken an active part in politics, although a public spirited citizen, leaving those matters to the practical politician. In religious faith he is a member of the Christian church.

On June 13, 1866, Dr. Moore married Elizabeth Acklam, daughter of Welbourn Acklam of Adams county, Illinois, and four children have been born to them: Edgar W, lives in Kansas City, Kan.; Charles S. is a resident of Hoquiam, Wash.; Alice is the wife of D. H. Woods of Effingham; and Dr. Orville O. resides in Topeka, Kan. Dr. Moore has been a member of the Masonic order for many years and belongs to several other fraternal organizations. (Kansas Biography, Vol. III, Part 2, Pages 806-808, Transcribed by: Millie Mowry)


The Reverend Thorvald Martin Bakke, clergyman, was born near Grimstad, Norway, November 12, 1871, son of Osten Thovsen and Oline Marie (Andersen) Bakke.

Osten Thovsen Bakke received a military education in Christians and, Norway. He was commanding sergeant in the annual maneuvers in Norway, and having taken training in shipbuilding, he became a ship builder on the coast. He came to America in August, 1872, pursuing the ship builder's trade in Brooklyn, New York, Staten Island, and Newburg. Then after five years' residence on a farm at Decorah, Iowa, he homesteaded in Walsh County, North Dakota, in June, 1881, and died at Park River, North Dakota, March 10, 1887.
Oline Marie Andersen was born in Grimstad, Norway, February 25, 1836, and died at North Valley, Wisconsin, June 5, 1921. She was active in community progress, and assisted in giving her two sons and daughter a fine education. Her brother was a graduate of a naval academy at Grimstad, a ranking seaman, who fell overboard near the Golden Gate, San Francisco.

Thorvald Martin Bakke attended public school in Iowa and North Dakota, and on June 10, 1895, was graduated from the Academy of St. Olaf College at Northfield, Minnesota. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Olaf College on June 22, 1899, and was graduated from Luther Seminary at St. Paul, Ma}r 29, 1902. While in school Mr. Bakke took an active interest in debating, declamation, and music. He was secretary-of his graduating class at college, and valedictorian of his academic graduating class.

Ordained to the ministry at Minneapolis, Minnesota, on June 22, 1902, at the convention of the Norwegian Lutheran Church, Mr. Bakke was installed as pastor at Norway, Kansas, on July 18, 1902.

After leaving grammar school Mr. Bakke taught public school for four terms in Walsh County North Dakota. In his vacation time at academy and college and at seminar he taught parochial school, and while pastor at various places also taught.

His marriage to Gunhild Thonette Strommen was soleminized at Norden, Wisconsin, July 13, 1902. She was born at Blanchardville, Wisconsin, April 4, 1876, and died at Waterford, Wisconsin, March 18, 1910. She was active in church work and was a student at Red Wing Ladies Seminary.

On September 30, 1911, Mr. Bakke was married to Thora Johanne Ronsen at Ionia, Wisconsin. They have the following children: Martin Ansgar, born August 15, 1912; Benjamin Garfield, November 9, 1913; Catherine Camilla, June 15, 1916; and Evangeline Vera, June 18, 1919. Martin has just completed his freshman year at Highland College. Benjamin completed his junior year at Jemison High School while the family resided in Alabama. Catherine completed her sophomore year at Effingham High School (Kansas) with honors, while Evangeline is in the sixth grade.

From 1902 until 1906 Mr. Bakke was pastor at Norway, Kansas. He became pastor at Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, in 1907, and at Waterford, in 1908. Removing to Minnesota in 1911, he became pastor of the church at Mapleton, and from 1916 until 1919 was pastor at Chauvin, Alberta, Canada. Returning to the United States in 1919, he was pastor at Centuria, Wisconsin, five years, and the following five years held the pastorate at Thorsb), Alabama. In 1929 he returned to Canada, holding pastorate at Lake Alma, Saskatchewan. At the present time he is pastor of St. John's Evangelical Lutheran congregation of Lancaster, Kansas.

Mr. Bakke is the author of Crystal and Crown, a book of poems, published in Minneapolis in January, 1900. He is the author of a pioneer Norwegian story, Et tomt Hits (November, 1927), besides numerous poems, essays, and stories in Norwegian and English publications. He has the manuscript of a novel in English ready for publication at the present time.

In January, 1931, Mr. Bakke transferred his membership from the Norwegian Lutheran Church of America to the United Lutheran Church of America. He is a life member of St. Olaf College Alumni Association, served as secretary of the Kansas Circuit from 1902 until 1906, and as treasurer of the Provost (Alberta) Circuit from 1916 until 1919. While in college Mr. Bakke was personals editor of the college periodical for several years, and was also literary editor. He was critic two terms in the Alpha Beta Chi Literary Society, and an officer of the Norwegian Society and the Mission Society.

While living in Roros he Was secretary and treasurer of the school district (1916-19), and served as postmaster there three years. His hobby is writing. Residence: Lancaster. (Illustriana Kansas, by Sara Mullin Baldwin & Robert Morton Baldwin, 1933, pages 62-64)


Nathan T. Veatch, superintendent of the Atchison city schools, is a native of Illinois. He was born near Astoria, Fulton county, and reared on a farm. After receiving a common school eduation, he began his career as a teacher in the district schools of Schuyler county, Illinois. Later he attended the State Normal school of Illinois, and was graduated from that institution with the class of 1881. He was principal of the graded school at Butler, Ill., for two years, and later was principal of an eighth grade ward school in Little Rock, Ark., for four years. He served as superintendent and principal of the Rushville city schools at Rushville, Ill., for fourteen years, and in 1901 was elected superintendent of the Atchison city schools and has held that position to the present time.

Mr. Veatch was married in 1883 to Miss Lizzie Montgomery of Rushville, Ill. She was a successful teacher prior to her marriage. To Mr. and Mrs. Veatch have been born two children, as follows: Nathan T., Jr., born at Rushville, Ill., and is now a civil engineer, and a member of the firm of Black & Veatch, consulting engineers, Kansas City, Mo., and Francis M., born at Rushville, Ill., a sanitary engineer, in the employ of Kansas University. (History of Atchison County Kansas by Sheffield Ingalls, 1916, Page 733, Submitted by Sara Hemp)


George Baudry, M. D., of Atchison, supreme physician for the Modern Brotherhood of America, was born at Eden, Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin, March 29, 1865, of French parentage, his people having come to America in 1848 and located in Wisconsin at one of the French settlements. His father died while he was an infant and his mother when he was six years of age. Following the death of his mother, together with his brother and three sisters, he lived with his maternal grandmother, who also resided at Eden, Wis. After securing what education he could, the boy began to clerk in a store and later became a commercial traveler, but he had early determined to study medicine and resigned his position to enter the Hahnemann Medical College, of Chicago, Ill., where he graduated in March, 1892. During this medical course he became interested in anti-vivisection. He traveled extensively, visiting twenty different governments and circumnavigated the globe during the research, gathering data from physicians the world over. For some time he was in the largest medical institutions of Europe, and upon his return to the United States published the result of his study in connection with Mr. Philip G. Peabody, of Boston, Mass., in a pamphlet with an introduction by Robert G. Ingersoll. In 1895 he returned to Europe to continue his studies in Paris. After completing his special course in France, the Doctor returned to America, and later settled in Atchison, where he has built up a fine practice. In politics Dr. Baudry is a stanch supporter of the Democratic party and an earnest worker in its interests, but is too fully engaged with professional work to take office. Fraternally he is a member of the Woodmen of the World, Yeomen, and the Fraternal Aid Society.

On Dec. 30, 1897, he married Miss Clara H. Horner, of Atchison. They have two children-Denease and Maurice Stewart. Dr. Baudry has been one of the supreme physicians of the Modern Brotherhood of America since November, 1904, and is filling that trying and delicate position to great satisfaction. He stands high among the medical fraternity, and deserves great credit for the position which he has gained. He has forged ahead by hard work, tenacity and determination. (Kansas Biogrpahy, Part 2, Vol. III, 1912, pages 902-903 Transcribed as written by Millie Mowry)


Carman H. Young, editor and proprietor of the "Atchison Champion," and also proprietor of Young's music house of that city, was born at Hanover, Jefferson county, Indiana, June 22, 1861. His father, James T. Young, was a native of the State of New York, and his mother, whose maiden name was John Emily McClelland, was born in Indiana of Scotch-Irish stock. In 1870 the family removed to Atchison, Kan., where both parents passed the remainder of their lives, having roared a family of six children. Carman H. Young presents a fine example of the self-made man. With only a limited common school education he began his business career as an employee in a furniture factory in Atchison, where he continued for several years. Although his work here was of humble character he gave it his attention, winning the approbation of his employers for the industrious and painstaking manner in which he discharged his duties. His next employment was in a machine shop. Realizing the advantages to be derived from a better education, he attended the night school and studied bookkeeping by himself, and after entering the machine shop he took up the systematic study of music with such enthusiasm that in a comparatively short time he came to be recognized as one of the most proficient musicians in the city. Having thoroughly qualified himself in this profession, he engaged in orchestra and band work, and for several years was leader of Young's band, which was recognized as one of the best musical organizations in the state, being engaged in a majority of occasions where band music constituted a part of the program. In 1880 he established himself in business as a dealer in musical instruments and with his characteristic energy and his skill as a musician he quickly made "Young's Music House" one of the best known concerns of its kind in the state. He handles everything in the music line, frequently buying his pianos in carload lots. Mr. Young is the sole proprietor of this business, and he feels a just pride in the large patronage he has built up through his careful methods and his square dealing with his patrons. He employs a number of salesmen in the house and as traveling representatives, and divides his time between the music house and his newspaper, which he bought on May 21, 1902. The "Atchison Champion" is one of the oldest papers in the State of Kansas, having been started in 1856 as the "Squatter Sovereign." Two years later it changed hands and the name was also changed to "Freedom's Champion." A few years later the word "Freedom" was dropped and the present form of name adopted. Since it came into the hands of Mr. Young he has improved it until it is today one of the leading daily papers of the state. Politically, Mr. Young is identified with the Republican party and has been active in winning victories for its principles. He was appointed a member of the Kansas State Conservation Commission by Governor Stubbs, June Elers and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, in both of which he is popular on account of his genial disposition and willingness to further the good work of each organization.

On Dec. 26, 1906, Mr. Young was united in marriage with Carrie A. Carolus, of St. Joseph, Mo. (Kansas Biography, Part 2, Vol. III, 1912, Pages 901-902, Transcribed as written by Millie Mowry)


George W. Shaver, president and treasurer of the Universal Lens Company, of Atchison, Kan., is an example of what may be accomplished in the West by a man whose only equipment in life was a com-mon school education, a pair of good hands, business ability and willingness to work. He has attained a high place in the business world, by his own unaided efforts and is one of the citizens of Atchison of whom she may justly be proud. He was born in Adrian, Mich., Jan. 17, 1857, a son of David O. and Harriet S. Shaver. The father was a railroad man, being master mechanic of the Pennsylvania Central railway for over forty years. He spent his entire life in the East and was at last laid to rest there, in 1906. Mrs. Shaver now resides in Chicago.

George W. Shaver spent his boyhood in Michigan, Indiana, and Pittsburgh, Pa. He was sent to the public schools until the age of sixteen, when he entered the railroad office and worked as timekeeper until he attained his majority. The young man had heard of the many golden opportunities offered a man in the West and determined to seek his fortune in Kansas. He located in Coffey county in October, 1877, where he engaged in farming and began to raise stock, and this business continued without interruption, with the exception of one year, until 1907. In that year the Universal Lens Company was organized, under a char-ter from the State of Kansas, by J. M. Osborne, W. W. Kite and J. B. Kearey, and Mr. Shaver became interested in the concern, subsequently being elected president and treasurer. The other officer at the present time is, H. D. Stone, the secretary, as Mr. Shaver also acts as general manager. The first factory was at Waverly, Kan., but on June 21, 1910, was removed to Atchison, and located at 1207-9-11 Main street. The company is supplying a glass which is of great benefit to humanity, especially those afflicted with impaired or imperfect vision. Recently the company perfected a process of making the fused tri-focal lens without aberration, that is, in a manner so that a straight line viewed as passing from one part of the lens to another does not seem to bend, this principle being fully covered by several patents, owned by the company, and the lens manufactured is perfectly adapted to all cases where the accommodation of the eye has failed materially, and is acknowledged the masterpiece of the optician's art. They not only manufacture the trifocal lens, but also, the bi-focal, or any other kind of lens known. Theirs is the only complete factory in Kansas, and the only in the world manufacturing the tri-focal lens. They make everything in the optical line,, and employ a large force of experienced workmen. Since becoming established in Atchison the business of the firm has increased, and it is regarded as one of the progressive and prosperous business houses of the city.

On Oct. 1, 1878, Mr. Shaver was united in marriage with Alice C. Brandon, of Burlington, Kan., who was born in Valparaiso, Ind. They have two children, Nancy Zielley and David 0., the latter being assistant manager of the universal Lens Company. Fraternally Mr. Shaver is affiliated with the Masonic order and Ancient Order of United Workmen. (Kansas Biography, Vol. III, Part 2, 1912, Pages 920-921, Transcribed as written by Millie Mowry)


Balie Peyton Waggener is a descendant of typical American ancestry, his great-grandfather having served as a lieutenant-colonel in the Continental army during the war for independence, and his grandfather was a major in the United States army in the war of 1812. He was born in Platte county, Missouri, July 18, 1847, a son of Peyton R. and Bniseis S. (Willis) Waggener, and until the age of fourteen years attended the public schools, where he laid the foundation of his education. At the age of fourteen he obtained a situation as toll-gate keeper on the old Platte City & Western turnpike. While thus employed he began the study of law, reading his law books at the toll-gate after his day's work was done. In 1866 he entered the law office of Otis & Glick, at Atchison, where he pursued his studies with such assiduity that, on June 10, 1867, he was admitted to the bar. Three years later he formed a partnership with Albert H. Norton, then United States district attorney, under the firm name of Norton & Waggener, which lasted until the election of Judge Norton to the office of chief justice of the Kansas supreme court, in 1876. In 1887 Mr. Waggener formed a partnership under the firm name of Waggener, Martin & Orr, which continued until April 30, 1895, when the firm was dissolved and Chief Justice Norton resigned his position as chief justice and became a member of the new firm; known as Waggener, Norton & Orr. David Martin, Mr. Waggener's former partner, became chief justice of the supreme court of Kansas to succeed Chief Justice Norton. In 1902 Judge Norton died, and later his place in the firm was taken by ex-Chief Justice Frank Doster, under the firm name of Waggener, Doster & Orr. It will thus be seen that Mr. Waggener was associated in the practice of law with three ex-chief justices of the supreme court of Kansas.

On Jan. 4, 1876, Mr. Waggener was appointed general attorney of the Missouri Pacific Railway Company for the State of Kansas, and on May 1, 1910, he was made general solicitor for that company for the states of Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado, his son, W. P. Waggener, succeeding him as general attorney for Kansas. During the forty-four years Mr. Waggener has been engaged in the practice of law he has won an enviable position at the bar, through his own personal efforts. He has never ceased to be a student of all subjects pertaining to that most jealous of professions, and it is worthy of note that he is the possessor of one of the most complete law libraries in the United States, containing upward of 10,000 volumes. He keeps his library at his residence, which is one of the handsomest and best appointed in the city of Atchison, and it is there that he prepares most of his cases.

Although primarily a lawyer, Mr. Waggener has found time to engage in other enterprises. In 1892 he was elected president of the Exchange National Bank, of Atchison, Kan., which position he has since held. He constructed and put into operation the Atchison Railway, Light & Power system in the city of Atchison, and owns a 500 acre farm, beautifully located, a short distance west of Atchison, and it is one of the most modern farms in the state, in its equipment of buildings, etc. Here he works out his ideas regarding the raising of alfalfa, hogs and mules, in which he has become a recognized authority.

In addition to his professional and business interests, Mr. Waggener has manifested a public spirit in matters pertaining to the political conditions of his city and state. Firmly grounded in Democratic principles, he has become one of the unquestionable leaders of that party and occupies a high place in its councils. In 1869 he was elected to the Atchison city council--when he had barely attained to his majority. In 1872 he was the nominee of his party for the office of attorney-general of the State of Kansas, and in 1873 was made city attorney. From 1889 to 1891, and again in 1895-97, he was mayor of the city. In 1902 he was elated a member of the lower branch of the state legislature, which had a large Republican majority, and during the term held the important position of chairman of the judiciary committee. It is generally conceded that he influenced much of the legislation of that session, and his record so commended him to his constituents that, in 1904, he was elected to the state senate from a strong Republican district, carrying the district by a majority of 1,500 votes, although, at the same election, Theodore Roosevelt, the Republican candidate for president, carried the same district by over 3,600, an indisputable testimonial to Mr. Waggener's personal popularity and his ability. Mr. Waggener is a member of all the secret orders. In Masonic circles he is a well known figure, being a Knight Templar and a Thirty-second degree member of the Scottish Rite, and also a member of the Shrine.

On May 27, 1869, Mr. Waggener married Miss Emma L., daughter of William Hetherington, one of Atchison's prominent citizens, and of this union was born a son and daughter, both now married. The son is a "chip of the old block," being general attorney of the Missouri Pacific Railway Company for the State of Kansas, and a director in and president of the Exchange State Bank of Atchison.

But perhaps the trait of character that most endears Mr. Waggener to the people of Atchison county is that liberality which led him, in 1897, to inaugurate the system of giving an annual picnic to the children. Every year, at his own personal expense, he furnishes free transportation, free entertainment, and free refreshments to all the children of Atchison county who can attend his picnic, and the larger the crowd the greater is his delight. These picnics are not given for the purpose of increasing his popularity, or for any self-aggrandizement whatever, but solely that he may steal at least one day in the year from his business cares and derive a wholesome recreation in contributing to the amusement of the young people. An Atchison paper says:
"Every year since he has been giving his picnic it has broken the record of the year before, until this occasion is now counted a more important holiday in Atchison than the Fourth of July." The report of the secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society for the year of 1911 contains the following:

"An interesting feature of President Taft's visit to Kansas was his attendance upon Balie Peyton Waggener's picnic to children, at Atchison. Waggener, for twelve years past, has been celebrating his birthday each year by giving a picnic to the children of the neighborhood. This year he obtained the promise of President Taft to attend his picnic, and so it was deferred until the date of the President's coming to Kansas. Therefore, on Sept. 27, Mr. Taft left Topeka about an hour after laying the corner stone of the Memorial Hall building and reached Atchison in time for Waggener's twelfth annual picnic. In speaking to the children President Taft said: `I feel highly indebted to Mr. Waggener for the opportunity of attending this unique entertainment. To entertain thousands of children once a year during a period of twelve years is a privilege for which I envy Mr. Waggener. He undoubtedly learned that important truth that the real pleasure of life is putting happiness into others. When Mr. Waggener was welcomed at the union depot by 3,000 of his little friends it was a token of thanksgiving to God for having saved him to the people. I'm not here to talk tariff, reciprocity, or any political topic, but to enjoy this wonderful exhibition of thanksgiving, happiness, and prosperity.' Then, taking in his hands a silver loving cup, he continued: 'A token is this, Mr. Waggener, that carries real sincerity of friendship. I present this beautiful vase of silver in the name of these people here assembled, as a sign of love and esteem. I congratulate you on the eminence you have obtained.' Waggener responded: `This is a distinction unmerited. I have no words to express my grateful acknowledgment.' Balie Waggener's picnic has become a feature of Kansas history, of a most pleasant nature. He is a life member of the State Historical Society, and as a member of the legislature he was always an ardent and most liberal friend of the society."

Upon the occasion of Mr. Waggener's return from Rochester, Minn., after undergoing a surgical operation of a serious nature, the following comments appeared in the "Kansas City Journal":

"Everybody in Kansas knows Balie Waggener, either personally or by reputation. Many know him as a big railroad attorney, who has gained wealth and influence; others as a successful politician, and still others as a citizen whom they may meet any day on the streets of Atchison. But none of these people knows Mr. Waggener as the children of Atchison know him, for every tot and chick in town just naturally loves him and he in return loves them. When Mr. Waggener was forced to go to Rochester, Minn., two months ago, to be operated on for a serious malady, juvenile Atchison moaned the absence of its great friend, and there were many anxious little hearts that beat in hope of his recovery. Saturday, Mr. Waggener returned to Atchison. It was a most unusual home-coming for any man, and the children of Atchison turned out to give him joyful welcome. The little boys and girls and babies were at the depot, in their stiffest curls and whitest dresses and shiniest faces. Hundreds of these boys and girls formed in lines, through which Mr. Waggener passed on his way to his home. His automobile was pelted with flowers and glad childish shouts filled the air. And it is recorded that big tears filled the eyes of the recipient of this demonstration, and for once he couldn't say a word. And he didn't need to. For many years he has been doing things to give pleasure to the children of Atchison, and now it was the children's turn, and they naturally took possession of that home-coming and made it the most beautiful and touch-ing thing that has ever happened in the life of Mr. Waggener. Few men in this world ever were so fortunate as to enjoy such an ovation. Men who have done important things have been received by town bands and by citizens covered with fluttering badges. Men have come back to their home people to be received in the opera house, and cheers have echoed in their receptive ears. But it must be understood that no such a home-coming as Waggener's could come to an ordinary man. It was the tribute of sincere devotion and genuine friendship. It couldn't be bought with money or earned by material success. These Atchison children didn't care a rap for Waggener the railroad attorney, or Waggener the politician, or even for Waggener the exemplary citizen. It was Mr. Waggener, the good kind friend they loved, to whom the welcome was given, and it sprung from sheer joy that he had recovered his health and was with them once more. And who can say that the earth holds a more splendid triumph as the crowning glory of a life than this. All other laudations and exclamations are tame compared with the flushed enthusiasm of hundreds of happy children shouting from their hearts:

'Waggener, Waggener, sis boom. ah,
Our friend, our friend, rah ! rah ! rah!'"

(Kansas Biography, Vol. III, Part 2, 1912, Pages 944-947, Transcribed as written by Millie Mowry. (A picture of Balie Peyton Waggener may be obtained by contacting the contributor at


John Seaton.---Death's fingers closed the eyes of a noble man and opened the portals of eternity when John Seaton crossed the valley of the Great Beyond at his home in Atchison, Jan. 12, 1912. In his passing Kansas lost one of her oldest and best known politicians and Atchison one of her most wealthy and public spirited citizens. His was a life of usefulness. Aside from his eighteen years in the Kansas legislature, which caused him to be known as "the father of the house," his life was full of the unusual and filled with interesting events.

John Seaton was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, June 11, 1834, and when three weeks old was taken by his parents upon their removal to Louisville, Ky., where he spent his boyhood. His father became a soldier under General Scott in the Mexican war and was killed in the storming of Cerro Gordo. Being thus robbed of his parent at an early age Mr. Seaton was thrown upon his own resources, and at the age of fifteen apprenticed himself to learn the machinist's trade. Before he reached his majority he worked as a journeyman in St. Louis. At the age of twenty-two he established a foundry at Alton, Ill., having but $2.50 which he could call his own, but he prospered and had fifty men in his employ when he removed to Atchison, in 1872. At the beginning of the Civil war he offered his services to his country and became captain of Company B in the Twenty-second Illinois infantry, serving under Grant when that commander fought his first battle at Belmont. Captain Seaton was in command of the skirmish lines which opened that engagement and received a letter from General Grant commending him for the efficient manner in which he did it. His career as a soldier was filled with deeds of heroism.

Mr. Seaton came to Atchison from Alton, Ill., in 1872. Six months before his arrival the city had voted $10,000 in bonds to any man who would establish a foundry there. He accepted the bonds and it proved to be a good investment for the city, as he gave employment to 200 men and built up an industry that stands without a peer in its line in the West. The secret of his success was that Mr. Seaton did strictly first class work. For eighteen years he carried his dinner with him to the foundry and worked with his men, although he owned a summer house on the seashore at Orient, Long Island, at the time of his death. No cheap work was ever allowed to go out of his establishment under any circumstances, and no one in the West stands higher than did he with architects and builders. In addition to general architectural work he filled orders for the Santa Fe, Missouri Pacific and Fort Scott & Gulf railroads, such as casting locomotive wheels, smokestacks, steam cylinders, car stoves, etc. He was in business continuously from 1856 until the time of his death, and in all that time never failed to pay his bills at maturity. The business of his establishment at Atchison amounts to $250,000 annually and the works cover an area of 700 by 400 feet.

Mr. Seaton was a useful man in many other ways, and he always took an active interest in the affairs of state. For a period of eighteen years a member of the Kansas legislature his name is associated with many of the important measures passed by that body. He was the father of the binding twine factory law, which act is responsible for the establishment of a plant at the state penitentiary. He probably did more toward the success of the "Douglass house," during the legislative trouble of 1893, than any other member of the Republican body. As a citizen and legislator he enjoyed the confidence and respect of Kansas people generally, without regard to party affiliations. He was unalterably opposed to trusts, and in general principles to corporations of a private nature, as he believed that corporations generally are devoid of souls.

Besides the widow four children survive Mr. Seaton. They are John C. of Eldorado Springs; Roy of Atchison; Mrs. W. H. Condit of Kansas City; and Mrs. G. W. Hendrickson of Atchison. Another daughter, Mrs. Nellie (Seaton) Bryan, died several years ago. (Kansas Biography, Vol. III, Part 2, 1912, Pages 1024-1025 Transcribed as written by Millie Mowry. (A picture of Mr. Seaton may be obtained by contacting the contributor at


JOHN L PORTER-- is a native of Pennsylvania, and was born at Gettysburg in that State, September 14, 1834, being a son of John B and Harriet K Porter. He was married November 10, 1861, to Mary E Ivie, a daughter of William H and Louisa Ivie. They had seven children, four of whom are living: Harriet K and Vincent O, who died in infancy; W.T.; Mary E, died October 01, 1906; Stacey G, now wife of Dr. F.C. Miller; Laura W; Julia L, now wife of Frank Garth. In 1839 Mr. Porter moved to Missouri with his parents, settling at Jefferson City. he lived there at home till grown, and then went into the telegraph construction business. He superintended the building of the first telegraph line from St. Louis to Leavenworth, Kansas. In 1853 the family moved to this county, where Mr. Porter has since made his home. After coming here he was engaged in farming for a time. Then in 1858 his brother, W.T. Porter, was elected Circuit Clerk and Recorder, and Mr. Porter served as deputy under him six years, excepting the time he was in the service of Uncle Sam. He served about a year in the enrolled Missouri Militia, and was also Provost Marshal of the Northeast Missouri for five months. Mr. Porter was deputy Circuit Clerk at the time of the burning of the courthouse, and it was through his efforts that most of the books of that office were saved, an account of which is given in the historical part of this book. He also served some years as Probate Judge by appointment. In the meantime he read law and was admitted to the bar here in 1860, though he never engaged in the active practice. Shortly after this the test oath law was passed and he refused to subscribe to it, and consequently was not permitted to practice. Just prior to the war Mr. Porter and his brother went into the real estate business here, having the first agency of that kind in the county. Mr. Porter was also the first man in the county to be granted a commission as notary. After the war, Mr. Porter was again engaged in the real estate business here, and from 1864 to 1866, freighted from Atchison, Kansas, to Denver, Colorado. he was for a few years, in the clothing business, and also in the grocery business, at Kirksville. In recent years he has retired from mercantile pursuits and has devoted his time to the real estate business, and looking after his various interests. When the coal fields began to be opened up here he took an active part in it. He helped to organize the Porter Coal and Mining Company and the Pennsylvania and Missouri Coal and Mining Company, being made president of both companies. Mr. Porter is still actively engaged in business and has many interests in the county; owns several tracts of farm land and a large number of business and dwelling houses in Kirksville. He is a stockholder in the Kirksville Trust Company and Citizens National Bank. He is a staunch Democrat and has always taken an active part in politics. He is a member of the Masonic order, belonging to the Blue Lodge Chapter, Commandery and Shriners. He is also a member of the Knights of Pythias and Elks. (The History of Adair County Missouri, by E. M. Violette, 1911, *signifies that the spelling or wording is put here, exactly as from the source, submitted by Desiree Burrell Rodcay)


JACOB A. DELFELDER, wool grower and stockraiser; rancher and farmer; (Rep.); b. January 11, 1871, Effingham, Kansas; s. of Frederick and Anna (Wagner) Delfelder; educ. pub. schls. Effingham; Atchison Business college, Atchison, Kansas; located in Wyoming Jun, 1892, and began herding sheep near Evanston; engaged in sheep raising and feeding continuously since; engaged in cattle and horse business since 1909; exhibits at lice stock exhibitions; took first price on best carload of sheep at International Livestock Show at Chicago, 1911 and 1912; president Wyoming Woolgrowers’ Assn., 1905-14; v-pres. National Woolgrowers’ Assn., 1908-9; mayor Riverton, 1913-14; mem. Wyo. H. of Rep., 1915-17; mem. 32 deg. Mason, Knight Templar, Shriner, Wyoming Consistory No 1; K. of P. Address: Riverton, Wyoming. [Source: Men of Wyoming, By C. S. Peterson, Publ 1915. Transcribed by Anna Parks]


Back to Index Page
Copyright © Genealogy Trails
All rights reserved to Kansas Genealogy Trails' Atchison County host & all Contributors