GARDEN CITY, Kan., September 27 --- The organization of Stanton county was completed today by the election of Johnson City as county seat, by a majority of about 300 over Eli and Westhaven, its competitors.
(Wichita Globe ~ Saturday ~ October 8, 1887) 


Eads, Colo., April 28 (AP) - The three Manter (Kan.) bank robbers, John Walker, Andrew Halliday and Claude Ray, Monday were sentenced to be hanged by District Judge Samuel D. Trimble, after he overruled a motion for a new trial. The execution was set for the week ending Aug. 9.

The three were found guilty of slaying Undersheriff Carol Hickman of Kiowa County.

Undersheriff Hickman was shot by the trio after the holdup of a Manter bank. The three men fled into Colorado after the holdup and then doubled back after shooting Undersheriff Hickman, and were captured across the Kansas State line. (Dallas Morning News, April 29, 1930, page 10, page 1)


The track laying gang got busy last Tuesday after a long delay, and laid 6,000 feet. They hoped to get the steel near Manter by the end of this week and then put the remainder of the track in shape. Work on the foundation for the agent's cottage at Manter was begun this week. They have been working on the pump house and depot at Ulysses and laying water pipe to the section house and stock pens this week.---Ulysses Republican.
(The Liberal Democrat ~ November 30, 1922)


Sunday the editor and family went over in Kansas to see the new Santa Fe railroad. We found every one on his mettle, especially at New Ulysses, where the railroad is completely built, and the new station is going up.

The road is graded westward to the new townsite of Manter, six miles west and two south of Johnson City, and track laid six miles west of New Ulysses.

We went by the way of Richfield and there found everyone hoping and praying for Byers to do for them what the Santa Fe is doing farther north---give them the much needed railroad. Let's all go to Hugoton Tuesday, September 5th, and show those people we're with them to a complete finish.---Stonington (Colo.) News.
(The Liberal Democrat ~ August 31, 1922)


Nine Months Ago Bare Prairie Where Now Flourishing Town


Two Grain Elevators There Now and More Are to be Erected Shortly

Manter, Kans., Sept. 15 --- Probably no town in Kansas has had such a remarkable growth as Manter, at the tarminus of the Santa Fe branch in Stanton county.

Manter was born Jan. 1, 1923, and consequently is not yet nine months old. But it is doing very well considering that it is in its infancy.

Where one year ago was wind-swept prairie now stands one of the most progressive and wide awake towns in western Kansas.

Probably no finer land for farming can be found in Kansas than is tributary to Manter while southeastern Colorado equally rich and possibly more developed, finds in this little city the outlet for its crops into the nations markets.


The Manter Commercial club, organized a few weeks after the town was born, is on its toes as a boosting organization. There are now two grain elevators doing business here, and it is rumored that two more grain elevator companies are to be located in Manter. It is said one may be built this summer. Sites are already owned by the interests which expect to build.

Work on the new grain elevator to be operated here by J. T. Gray Grain Company has been temporarily held up pending the arrival of materials. The concrete work has been completed. The building will have a capacity of 15,000 bushels.

The George E. Gano grain elevator, recently completed in Manter, is one of the largest in this part of the state, being of 40,000 bushels capacity. It is owned by Geo. E. Gano of Hutchinson.


Twelve cars of cattle, two cars of hogs, one of barley, and one of wheat have been shipped from Manter during the past month and with the harvest of row crops it is expected a material increase in shipments from the local office will be noted during the coming fall months. Sixteen cars of merchandise were received over the Santa Fe in Manter during August.

Nearly all of the crops of 1922 had been moved at the time of the platting of Manter early in the present year but despite that fact, 90 car loads of grains and other commodities have been shipped since the first of the year while 160 carloads of merchandize, etc., have been received at the local office.

The Gano grain elevator shipped a carload of wheat to Hutchinson the past week and other shipments are to be made during the present week. R. B. Selby is local manager.


Much building is in prospect in Manter this fall, many persons who built temporary homes for summer use planning to erect permanent homes.

Petitions are now out for the establishment of a rural high school district, with a view of erecting a large high school soon.

Work is progressing rapidly on the two school buildings which will be opened this month to take care of the children of Manter. The buildings are being erected just south of the M. E. church. They are to be built so that they can be sold for residence purposes next spring at which time a school building, to cover over $13,500 is to be erected on land given to the city by the Santa Fe railroad in the northeast part of the town. There are at least 50 children of school age who will attend the schools here. I. J. Klein is in charge of the two new buildings.


It is expected that the Manter State Bank will soon be located in its new home on Washington street. Concrete has been poured for the foundation and construction work will be rushed.

Within the next few weeks arrangements will be made toward financing the completion of the Manter M. E. Community church. The building, as it stands, was completed last spring, the cost being about $1,100.
(Hutchinson News ~ September 15, 1923)


Rev. M. P. Julian makes the following request to his brother ministers in behalf of the Stanton county, Kan., sufferers:

"I ask that ministers of the various churches bring the destitute condition of the Stanton county sufferers before their congregations, and appoint committees to solicit aid; said committee to report progress to the board of trade, and also designate through that channel the day or days for delivering said contributions.  Arrangements are made with the railroad officials for free transportation.  If shipped on the Santa Fe will be sent to Syracuse.  If shipped on the Rock Island to Liberal.  Supplies will go to the county commissioners, who will see that the destitute get them.  Stanton county was slow to make the appeal, consequently there has been but little done for that county yet.

"He that giveth to the poor lendeth to the Lord."
Fraternally, M. P. JULIAN,
One of the committee empowered by the commissioners of Stanton county, Kan.
(Wichita Eagle ~ Friday ~ November 22, 1889 ~ Submitted by Lori DeWinkler)


A Farewell Reception for Mr. and Mrs. George Rathbun

Mr. and Mrs. George D. Rathbun, who will leave at 9 o'clock tomorrow morning for their new home in Stanton county, Kan., were surprised at the home of Mr. and Mrs. S. A. Hester, Mrs. Rathbun's parents, last evening by a large party of their friends who tendered them a farewell reception.  Dainty refreshments were served and games and music furnished an enjoyable program.  Mr. and Mrs. Rathbun were presented with a set of handsomely decorated dinner plates.  Among the guests were Messrs. and Mesdames Alford, William Russell, Scott Hester and Chris Hester, Mesdames M. B. Griffis, J. D. Ward and A. W. Smith, Misses Nellie Alford, Ollie and May Chapin and Elva and Clara Hester, and Messrs. Riddle and Tawney.

Mr. and Mrs. Rathbun will stop en route to Stanton county to visit Mr. Rathbun's brother, Riley Rathbun, in Rice county.  They will reach Johnson, the county seat of Stanton county, Tuesday noon.  Mr. Rathbun has a house ready to move into on his farm two miles south of Johnson.  He will have a law office at the county seat.

The many friends of Mr. and Mrs. Rathbun regret their departure from Ottawa but wish them every success in their new home.  Mr. Rathbun resigned the city attorneyship of Ottawa and leaves a good practice in Ottawa, but is confident that the rapidly developing west offers a splendid field for him.
(Ottawa Daily Republic ~ Friday ~ September 28, 1906 ~ Submitted by Lori DeWinkler)


If Jerry Whitmire, a young Stanton county, Kan., farm employe, could have purchased "bootleg" whisky a few days ago he would have fewer troubles now.  Failing to secure liquor because of the strict enforcement of the prohibitory law, he tapped his employer's silo and imbibed much silo juice, a variety of stimulant that leads to strange results.  Whitmire, after frequent potations, fitted an improvised rope halter to a 200-pound hog and rode the animal ten miles down a cattle trail until it dropped dead.  Neighbors say that they will urge the humane society to instigate proceedings.---New York Herald.
(Wichita Daily Eagle ~ Friday ~ January 3, 1913 ~ Submitted by Lori DeWinkler)


Topeka, Dec. 6 --- With the granting of a charter to the Johnson State Bank at Johnson, Stanton county, Kan., Friday afternoon, every one of the 105 counties now can boast of having a banking institution.  The new bank is capitalized at $10,000
(Coffeyville Daily Journal ~ Saturday ~ December 6, 1913 ~ Submitted by Lori DeWinkler)


Eloping Bridegroom Helps Harvest Broom Corn --- Saves Money

Johnson, Kans., Sept. 30 --- When Judge Robert R. Friend married G. B. Buckner and Goldie A. Gregor in his broomcorn field he established a precedent.  The couple eloped and fled to Johnson in an automobile.  Because of a shortage of broomcorn hands "his honor" was working in the field.  Grasping the situation he refused the groom's proffered money and made the young couple help pull broomcorn in payment for service.
(Evening Herald ~ Ottawa, KS ~ Monday ~ September 30, 1912)


Johnson, Kan. --- Finley Yinger, a prominent rancher near here, has proposed a farmers' co-operative association for Stanton county.  He proposes that members list with a manager all marketable products, agreeing in writing not to sell them till authorized to do so by the association.  The manager is to watch the market and ship at opportune times.  While the members' products are tied up awaiting shipment, if any one should need ready money he could obtain a loan equal to a third or fourth of a conservative estimate of the market value of his products listed with the association, according to the plan.
(Cheney Sentinel ~ Thursday ~ November 14, 1912)


Johnson, Kan. --- L. D. Rorick, Stanton county planter, holds the record for high profits in this section.  From seven acres of cane he harvested 150 bushels of seed valued at $1 per bushel.  He ground 215 gallons of sorghum molasses valued at 65 cents per gallon.  The roughness remaining is worth $25.  Total production per acre $44.96.
(Cheney Sentinel ~ Thursday ~ November 14, 1912)


Tented Towns Follow Santa Fe Construction in the West

Johnson, Kan., Dec. 8 --- Kansas is living today the days of the U.P. trail when the Union Pacific fought its way across the continent and terminal towns sprang up along the railroad over night, lived a thriving, excited, colorful and short life, only to succumb to desertion as the construction gangs moved father on.  At least, Stanton county in Kansas is living the beginning of that cycle.

Manter is the newest terminal town.  It is a tented town, a railroad supply and consuming point at the end of the Santa Fe railroad's new branch west from Satanta, two counties east of here.  A month ago there was nothing in the Manter neighborhood but western Kansas plains, hot with their reflecting mirages in summer and wind swept with biting cold in winter.  Tents and dugouts are the main accommodations of Manter and frame buildings will be the next advantage.

Johnson itself has known the luxury of rail transportation and passenger service but a short time, but Johnson has homes, a few of them.  New buildings are rapidly springing up in Johnson but Johnson is unable to accomodate the number of people who have come to Stanton county, stopped here, or working out of here into Manter.  Johnson is the county seat, but it is a county seat that was formerly forty miles from a railroad, until the Santa Fe came.

Tents and dubouts are shelters for people now living in JOhnson, as well as most of Manter's inhabitants.  Garages and cabins, makeshift shacks---these are the homes of the newly arrived.  And will be the homes, even when winter comes.

Manter, now five weeks old, boasts a frame building, moved into town to provide a permanent atmosphere for the town's most respectable eating place.

Two newspapers now make their appearance in Stanton county, the Johnson Pioneer and the Stanton County New Era.  They chronicle Stanton county's current history in its progressing new era: the first car of oil cake has arrived; the first car of Johnson county grain has been shipped; a car of coal arrives soon, etc.

The pioneers have not yet passed Kansas, or passed in Kansas.
(Chanute Daily Tribune ~ Saturday ~ December 9, 1922) 


Johnson City, Kan., March 29 --- Last Sunday afternoon Rev. Sprague Davis, the minister of Syracuse, Kan., delivered a lecture in the Methodist Church in this place.  In the pulpit he is said to have used indecent and vulgar language.  The charge brought against him by the citizens caused his arrest Monday.  He was arraigned in the police court.  At the trial a large number of witnesses wer examined, among them being the county officials, all testifying that the language used in the lecture was foul and unbecoming.  The defense was conducted by the minister himself.  He was found guilty as charged, the verdict being a fine of $300 and costs.  No similar case to this can be found in any court decisions of the United States.
(Concordia Blade-Empire ~ Friday ~ March 30, 1888 ~ Page 1)


Speculators Cannot Realize On Old Securities

More Than Half Litigation In Western Kansas, Is Over This Particular Cause --- New Settlers Need Not Pay

Johnson City, Kan., Sept. 11 --- Judge William H. Thompson, of the thirty-second judicial district, today decided that mortgage speculators cannot buy up old and forgotten mortgages, given twenty years ago and then force the new settlers who hold titles, under Sheriff sales etc., to pay these mortgages or get off the land.  More than half of the litigation in the western Kansas counties is over thees mortgages.  The title of this case is Van Hall and Huffman vs. Frank Cessna, et al.  The original mortgage was given in 1888 and bore twelve per cent interest.
(Arkansas City Daily Traveler ~ Friday ~ September 11, 1908, Page 1)


Last of the Railroadless Counties to Start One

Johnson City, Kan., May 27 --- The last Kansas County without banking facilities will soon have a bank of its own.  For nearly twenty years Stanton county, one of the railroadless counties of southwest Kansas, has not had a bank of its own.  During the boom days there was a private bank here but it closed July 14, 1894, and there has been no bank in the county since.

Charles M. Sawyer, state bank commissioner has authorized the granting of the charter to the Johnson City State Bank.  It will have $10,000 paid up capital the day the bank is opened for business.  The incorporators are:  R. J. Cockrun, Charles Heinrin, Charles Norlin, H. P. Jones, James Herrick, John V. Cockrun.

All of the incorporators but one are Stanton county men.  They have lived there many years and have stood the seige of poor crops and hard times and no banks and no railroads for many years.  They are going to get a bank within a few days and pretty soon they will have a railroad, as the plans are made for the Santa Fe to extend a branch of its new line up into Stanton county.  R. I. Cockrun, one of the incorporators is an experienced banker.  He formerly lived at Pueblo, Colo., and is going to be the managing officer of the new institution.

Stanton county is the last of the five railroadless counties to get a bank.  Morton county did not have a bank until a few years ago and it has been only within the past few years that the others of the railroadless counties have had banks.
(Salina Daily Union ~ Tuesday ~ May 27, 1913 ~ Page 8)


Stanton, County, Kansas, Has Its Only First Degree Murder Conviction

Garden City, Kan., June 27 --- When Judge William H. Thompson last week imposed a life sentence in the penitentiary on George L. Pearce, a farmer of Stanton County, for shooting J. I. Silvey, the Thirty-second Judicial District had its first conviction for first degree murder.  A previous trial resulted in a hung jury.  The jury this time was out five hours before returning a verdict.  It is considered remarkable that a jury could be obtained in the county to vote for conviction, as the entire man population is only one hundred and fifty.  The total of the two venires called by Judge Thompson was 121.  Bond has been fixed at $25,000 pending an appeal.

The shooting of Silvey is said to have resulted from a dispute over land boundaries.  Testimony showed that Pearce, who is an old man, had illegally fenced in range land, and that when Silvey drove his stock over this unleased property, he became enraged and shot him.  The state alleged that Pearce lay in wait for Silvey and shot him from the tower of a windmill as he passed on horseback.  Pearce has been active in politics and last year was defeated for register of deeds.

In his defense Pearce employed a wide array of legal talent, among his consel being A. B. Reeve, former mayor of Dodge City, and Joseph G. Waters, of Topeka.  Senator S. M. Brewster, an assistant attorney general, had charge of the case for the state, being assisted by L. a. Madison, a brother of Representative Madison.
(Emporia Gazette ~ Tuesday ~ June 27, 1911 ~ Page 4)


Only one place worse than Hell,
That's ole Stanton County Jail.
Can't get out even with bail,
Lawyers try it and they all fail.

Lost some weight and your stomach will purr,
It happens in Johnson, that's for sure.
Just ask me all and I'll tell,
If I ever get out of Stanton County Jail.

Hell, it's not bad, give her a try,
Meet a new pal with a busted eye.
The door just opened, here comes a drunk,
Gotta run fast or I'll lose my bunk.

Sweep the floors and wash the cars,
Treat 'em nice, then go back to the bars.
Walk in a circle or read a book,
Caught me with a week and that's all it took.

Take a shower, then lay in bed,
Visions of your girl running through your head.
Yea, it's too late that I know,
Whatta helluva place for your hair to grow.
                                         ---By a Prisoner
(Wichita Eagle ~ Sunday ~ November 4, 1973 ~ Page 21)



One May Be Fatally Injured --- 12 Mile Race and Battle

Syracuse, Kan., March 3 --- G. R. Frazier, a prominent rancher living 12 miles southwest of Johnson City, Stanton county, lies at the point of death in the Rex hotel here as the result of an old range feud with L. D. Rorick, a neighbor ranchman.  Rorick and Frazier have lawed a range feud in the courts at Johnson City for years without saatisfaction.  For several weeks each has been under a peace bond required by Judge Charles Noflin.

A few days ago Rorick went to the Frazier ranch for a talk with his enemy.  An altercation led to a bitter fight, in which both parties used k nives freely.  Rorick received bad cuts about the head and chest.  Frazier's wounds are deep seated gashes in the sides and chest and the wounded man has suffered repeated hemorrhages from bleeding lungs.  A deep dent in the case of his watch, carried in his shirt pocket directly over his heart, indicates the fray was deadly.

A son of Frazier's arrived at the scene of the fight with a 40-44 rifle in time to drive Rorick from the ranch yard and save his father from certain death.  Rorick fled to his ranch but returned a  half hour later with his son and a running fight followed in an attempt by each party to reach Johnson City first and secure the other's arrest.  During the 12-mile race numerou shots were exchanged, none hitting their mark, probably because of the weekend condition of the combatants.  Sheriff Williams, of Stanton county, refused to make an arrest until the result of Frazier's wounds became certain.  Frazier was rushed to this city, a distance of 30 miles, by auto from Johnson City.  Until the result of his fight for little becomes apparent Rorick will be detained under guard in Johnson City, though not legally under arrest.
(Topeka State Journal ~ Thursday ~ March 3, 1914 ~ Page 10)

F. F. Miller, an old veteran 68 years old, tried to commit suicide in Memphis recently by drinking a bottle of laudanum on the streets of that city.  A policeman saw him attempt to drink the drug and dashed the vial from his lips.  He was working his way from Arkansas to the Soldiers' home at Johnson City and was penniless.
(Leavenworth Weekly Times ~ Thursday ~ March 8, 1906 ~ Page 2)

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