Kansas boasts of its agricultural resources and with reason. It also boasts of the high class of men who are engaged in agriculture and with equal reason. Among these agriculturists there is none who has a higher standing than Aaron Pierce Hinman, a man who has engaged in many different occupations and made good in them all, but has chosen the farm as the place where he can spend the rest of his life, close to nature.

He was born at Reading, Pennsylvania, April 17, 1850. His father's name was Philo C. Hinman, a native of Connecticut, where he was brought up and educated, learning the trade of wagon making and blacksmithing. He married Susanna Todd, also a native of Connecticut. Soon after they were married they went to Reading, Pennsylvania, but did not stay there very long. In 1856 they went back to Connecticut, locating at Westville. In 1860 they moved to Illinois, where they brought up their children.

When Aaron was six years old he went with his parents to Westville, Connecticut, where he started in school. When he was ten years old the family moved to Illinois, where Aaron again went to school, attending the public school and then the farmers' seminary. After he had completed the seminary work he studied telegraphy, gaining a position with the Rock Island Railway in 1875. He next moved to Iowa, where he remained until 1884, at which time he came to Kansas City, having procured the position of check clerk for the Railroad. His wife, ambitious to assist in making money, opened a restaurant, which gradually evolved into the grocery business, located at 215 James street. Mr. Hinman gave up his position and devoted his attentions to building up the business. At the close of three successful years his store burned out and instead of finding another business location he decided to give up the mercantile business. He moved to Quindaro township where he has lived ever since, except for five years when he lived in Wyandotte. In 1903 he bought forty acres of land from Allen Swanson. There were no improvements on this land, but Mr. Ilinman set to work, using his farming knowledge gained at the seminary, to improve the land so that it should produce to its fullest capacity. He set out about seven hundred fruit trees, making a specialty of raising fruit. He has built a comfortable home on the farm. For five years he was mail carrier on rural free delivery route No. 1, his son being his assistant. Mr. Hinman's health gave way and his son took the route off his hands entirely.

On April 2, 1877, he married Alice A. Mutchler, daughter of Charles and Dorothy N. (Heinig) Mutchler of Davies county, Towa. Mrs. Hinman was born in Iowa, October 14, 1855, living in her native place until after her marriage. She was a very enterprising woman, desirous of being in a position where they could have something to live on when they grew old. She was by nature a domestic woman, but she was also a money maker, as is evidenced by the success she achieved in the restaurant she conducted. Mr. and Mrs. Hinman had four children, all of whom are living now. The two sons, Charles and John M., are living at home with their parents, the former working on the farm and the latter carrier in the rural free delivery. Jessie May married John Angold and now lives in Kansas City, Kansas. Bessie Alice, the youngest, is a stenographer in the Board of Trade Building in Kansas City, Missouri.

In 1909 Mr. Hinman was appointed deputy assessor under Mr. Giltner, doing such good work that in 1911 he was again a candidate for office and was elected clerk of the township, a position which he is now holding. He is a member of the Royal Mystic Legion and of the Christian church. He is a most earnest worker in that little body of disciples, but he does not confine his religion to his church work, but it is with him in his daily life, in his relations with his family, in his work about the farm and in his political duties. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 630-631)


One of the best known and highly esteemed citizens of Kansas City, Kansas, and one of the most active, efficient and popular officers of Wyandotte county, Albert L. Becker is now serving his second term as sheriff of the county, a position for which he has shown himself pre-eminently fitted, A son of Nicholas Becker, he was born May 28, 1875, in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, coming from German and Swiss ancestry. His paternal grandfather, Nicholas Becker, Sr., a life-long resident of the Fatherland, was a man of prominence in his native city, which he served as mayor.

Born in Germany, Nicholas Becker, father of Albert L., was educated in his native land, and as a young man emigrated to the United States, and for awhile followed the carpenter's trade in the east. In 1885 he located in Kansas City, Missouri, where he was engaged in mercantile pursuits until his death, in 1906. Industrious and thrifty, he was a good citizen and a faithful member of the Republican party. His wife Margaret, who was born in Switzerland, came to this country with her parents, locating in Pennsylvania, where she was married. Eight children were born to them, Albert L. being the second child in order of birth.

Obtaining his early education in the schools of Kansas City, Missouri, Albert L. Becker began as a child to earn money, his first work having been that of selling newspapers on the street. When but twelve years of age he became bundle boy in the dry goods establishments of G. T. Smith, in that capacity receiving two dollars a week. He afterwards found a position in a trunk factory, where he was given four dollars each week for his work. He subsequently learned the trade of a steam fitter, and later entered the employ of the Armour Packing Company, where he learned the art of manufacturing cans, and continued with the company fourteen years. In 1902 Mr. Becker became local fireman on the Frisco Railroad, with which he was connected for a year. Securing a position then with the Missouri Pacific Canning Company, he remained with the firm until 1905, and in that year he was elected for two terms in the city court which position he held four years. In 1908 he was elected sheriff of Wyandotte county, Kansas, having the distinction of being the only county officers then elected on the Republican ticket. He performed the duties devolving upon him in that responsible position so ably and satisfactorily that in November, 1910, he was re-elected sheriff of the county, the seventy-eight thousand, five hundred and thirty-two votes cast in his favor being the largest number received by any one candidate on the ticket and giving him a majority of one thousand, four hundred aNd thirty-one votes.

Having never swerved from the political faith in which he was reared, Mr. Becker is an intelligent and stanch supporter of the principles of the Republican party. He belongs to the Union Club, and is a member of Pride of the West Lodge, No. 484, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; of the Encampment; of the Ancient Order of United Workmen; of the Improved Order of Red Men; of the Modern Woodmen of America; of the Yeomen of America; and of the Wyandotte Lodge, No. 440, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.

Mr. Becker married, June 5, 1898, Anna Sehultz, who was born in Denmark, which was also the birthplace of her parents, Samuel and Sadie Sehultz. Immigrating to this country with his family many years ago, Mr. Sehultz located in Kansas City, Kansas, and for thirty or more years has here been associated with the Armour Packing Company, at the present time being assistant foreman. Of the nine children born to Mr. and Mrs. Sehultz, six are living, Mrs. Becker being the second child in succession of birth. The union of Mr. and Mrs. Becker has been brightened by the birth of six children, namely Albert, Edward, Thelma, Finley, who died in infancy; Hazel, and Raymond Sheriff. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 631-632)


The great Empire of Germany has contributed its fair quota to the upbuilding up this nation and among its residents in this country are to be found successful men in every walk of life from the professions to the prosperous farmer. Valentine Leavenduskey came to America in the year 1883 and since that time has been a prominent and influential resident of Wyandotte county, Kansas. He is now engaged in farming on a finely improved estate of one hundred and eleven acres, eligibly located two miles distant from Bethel, where his attention is devoted principally to fruit and berry growing. He is a sterling American citizen, loyal and public spirited in his civic life, broad minded and honorable in business, and alert and enthusiastically in sympathy with every measure tending to further the material welfare of the entire country.

Valentine Leavenduskey was born at Posen, Germany, the date of his nativity being the 15th of January, 1850. He was reared to man's estate in his native land and there availed himself of the advantages afforded in the public schools. In 1883, at the age of thirty-three years, he immigrated to the United States, proceeding directly to Kansas and locating in Rosedale, where he secured employment in the Roller Mills. For a period of eight years he worked for the Armour Packing Company, at Kansas City, and at the expiration of that period he turned his attention to farming. He purchased his land in the year 1887 but did not begin to farm it until 1888. For a time Mr. Leavenduskey was engaged in diversified agriculture but he now devotes the major portion of his time and attention to the raising of fruit and berries, his estate being recognized as one of the finest fruit farms in Kansas. Beautiful modern buildings, in the midst of fine orchards, are splendid indications of the thrift and industry of this practical German.

Mr. Leavenduskey has been twice married, his first union having been to Miss Anna Morrechuk, a native of Germany, where her death occurred in 1882. She was survived by two children, Stanislaus, who is engaged with his father on the farm; and Lena, who resides at Kansas City, Kansas. In the year 1883, in Germany, was celebrated Mr. Leanvenduskey's marriage to Miss Katie Polzen. To the latter union have been born seven children, whose names are here entered in respective order of birth: Mary, Anna, Tony, Joe, Effie, Nettie and Mike. In their religious faith the Leavenduskey family are consistent members of the Polish Catholic church, to whose good works they are generous contributors.

In politics Mr. Leavenduskey is aligned as a stalwart supporter of the principles of the Democratic party. He is not an office seeker but gives freely of his aid and influence in support of all measures and enterprises projected for the general progress and improvement. He is affiliated with a number of representative fraternal organizations of a local nature and numbers among his friends some of the prominent business men of the county. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 632-633)


Christopher P. Coppey is a native son of the county in which he lives-Wyandotte county, Kansas-and owns and operates a fine farm of one hundred and sixty acres near Piper.

Mr. Coffey's parents, Barney and Catherine (Smith) Coffey, came to this county from Ireland, where they were born and reared. Arrived in the United States, Barney Coffey found employment on the railroad, and just previous to the outbreak of the Civil war he came to Wyandotte county, Kansas, and engaged in farming. During the war he served the country of his adoption as a member of the Kansas State Militia. He was a Democrat in politics, and throughout his life he was a devout Catholic. He took a deep interest in the general welfare of the community in which he lived, giving both his influence and material support toward the advancement of school and church work. Indeed, he was the leader in the building of a school and a Catholic church in his district. For a number of years he served as a member of the School Board, and at the time of his death he was postmaster at Menager Junction, Prairie township. At the time he and his wife came to this country they had two children, and afterward eleven more were born to them.

Christopher P. was born December 20, 1869; was reared on his father's farm, and received his education in the district schools near his home. When he reached manhood and started out in life for himself he went to Henry county, Illinois, and engaged in the meat business. But the farm and his native county had their attractions, and he came back here and has since devoted his time and attention to agricultural pursuits. He now has one hundred and sixty acres of choice land near Piper and carries on general farming.

In 1893 he married Miss Mary Deren, of Illinois, whose untimely death occurred in 1901. Their happy union was blessed in the birth of four children: Elsie, Pearl, Madge and Boy.

Politically Mr. Coffey affiliates with the Republican party in affairs of national moment, but at the local polls he votes for the man rather than the party. As a progressive farmer and substantial citizen he is held in worthy esteem in the community. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 633-634)


John P. J. Hovey is a man who honestly lives up to his own beliefs and is a prominent merchant in Wyandotte county. Most people are consumed with anxiety as to what others will think of their actions and they govern their actions and conduct according to other people's ideas. There is another class of men who are utterly regardless of what their neighbors think and in order to show their independence they go ahead and do exactly the opposite to the approved, generally accepted methods. There are a few men who take the pains to find out in their own minds what is the right course to pursue and they follow that course regardless of everything. It is through such men that reforms come and without them there would be no reforms. It is to this class that Mr. Hovey belongs, a man of fine personality.
Mr. Hovey was born in Wyandotte county, Kansas, September 24, 1872, the son of the late G. U. S. Hovey and his wife Ella J. (Hurst) Hovey. Of the former, who was a remarkable man, more extended mention will be made in succeeding paragraphs. Mr. and Mrs. Hovey were the parents of the following children: Ella Jane, the eldest, who is dead; John P. J., residing at White Church; Emeline, who died in infancy; Josephine B., who makes her home with her mother; George, deceased; Anna T., living with her mother; and Alfred C, a farmer in Lincoln county, Kansas.

John P. J., the second child of his parents, was educated in the public schools in Wyandotte county and when he was very young he helped his father in the store. He possessed unusual business ability which he manifested even in his earliest youth and he soon took full charge of the store. He now owns the business entirely and is very successful in managing it. In 1906, after the death of his father, Mr. Hovey was appointed notary public to succeed his father. The fact that he has held that position ever since that time is sufficient evidence that he has filled it in a satisfactory way. He is a young man and has a long life of usefulness before him, which, to judge by his past, will be one which will contribute materially to the well being of his fellow men.

It cannot be otherwise than fitting that the life of a man such as George Underhill Stephenson Hovey should be given more than cursory notice in a work of this description and herewith is published an excellent appreciation which appeared in the Kansas City Sun and which gives an idea of his usefulness.

Mr. Hovey was born in Ulster county, New York, July 19, 1842, and died at his home at White Church, Kansas, January 7, 1906, after a protracted illness with dropsy. He left a wife and four children. Mr. Hovey was the eldest of three children, born to Alfred and Elizabeth (Underbill) Hovey, natives of England and New York, respectively. Mrs. Hovey was a direct descendant of old Captain John Underhill, who made a record in the old country about the time of the Pilgrims. Mr. Hovey was educated in the schools of New York city, and at Elmville Seminary. In 1863 he went to California, taking a steamer to Nicarauga, crossing the Isthmus, then taking a steamer to San Francisco and remained in California about seven years, engaging in business in Sonoma county. Returning to New York city, he married Miss Ella Jane Jones, native of that metropolis, the date of their union being February 10, 1870. Coming to Kansas the same year, he located at White Church, where he has made his home ever since, enduring many of the privations and hardships of frontier life.

Mr. Hovey was prominent in the development of the county and held many positions of trust. He was postmaster of White Church for thirty-five years, except for an interim of four years. He was justice of the peace twelve years and county commissioner six, during five years of which he was chairman of the board. During that time the county made rapid and important strides. It was while he was commissioner that the fine brick building was erected on the poor farm; $500,000 in bonds were voted for the improvement of the roads of the county, and $270,000 for the building of bridges and culverts; the new jail was erected, bridges built across the Kansas river, and many other important improvements were made during his term of office. He assisted in negotiating the stock of the Kansas City Northwestern railroad; he always encouraged the erection and maintenance of good schools and was liberal in the support of the churches in his community. "When the great educational movement swept over Kansas (perhaps the greatest educational movement that ever existed in any land- the Alliance movement-the good effect of which is being felt in all parts of the country even at this day) he was one of the most prominent factors in eastern Kansas, and was made treasurer of the County Alliance. He was initiated into the secrets of Masonry in Petalona Lodge, No. 77, of California, and was the first to join Delaware Lodge, No. 96, Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons at White Church, after its organization. He was a consistent member of the Christian church; a member of the County Historical Society; the State Historical Society; and was made an honorary member of the Quivera Historical Society, on account of his extended research and large collection of archaeological specimens.

A short time previous to his death the following article appeared in the Leavenworth Post:

Word was received in the city today of the critical illness of Hon. George U. S. Hovey, the postmaster and merchant at the village of White Church, south of here. He has been afflicted with dropsy for some time. Mr. Hovey came to this locality in 1870. He is well known throughout this section. He is an archaeological explorer of considerable prominence and has gathered in this region one of the most extensive collections of prehistoric Indian relics in Kansas. He is an authority on ethnology and early western history, a member of many scientific and historic societies and a correspondent of the Smithsonian Institute, Peabody Museum, and the scientific institutions in Europe.

Mr. Hovey has a covered wagon, made to order, which he has christened the Yacht Qipsy, and in which he has traveled all over this region on his exploring expeditions. He is a life member of the Quivera Historical Society and has done some exploring in the old province of Quivera, visited by Coronado in 1541.

In his Yacht Gypsy, (which was elegantly finished inside) accompanied by his wife and daughter, he made two extended trips; one south through western Missouri into the Ozark Mountains, and then with a lighter vehicle, extended his trip into Arkansas. The other trip through the interior of Kansas, covering a part of the territory traversed by Coronado and his one thousand, one hundred soldiers, in 1541, was in search of the two towns of Quivera and Harahey, but they found only two poor villages.

Mr. Hovey spent much time in his researches and his collection of prehistoric specimens, such as stone implements, some of which were used by these people many centuries ago in preparing their food and tanning the hides of animals. The idea that the early inhabitants of this locality, used these stone implements for tanning purposes, originated with Mr. Hovey but he presented his points so forcibly and exhibited so many of these implements from localities where communities had been located, the same being distant from the quarries, where such stones could be secured, that most of the archaeological students finally conceded the correctness of his position. Most of these specimens were found in Wyandotte county, where there exists many evidences of there having been a town of considerable proportions. He believed that this locality, at the edge of the great prairies and convenient to water and timber, was the natural place for a town-a manufacturing town. Here doubtless the hides secured in the great buffalo hunts were tanned, the rough flint stones manufactured into arrow points and implements, as evidenced by large quantities of chips or spaul-small pieces of flint, rock, etc. Here he secured thousands of specimens of flint arrow points, stone axes, tanning knives and other primitive implements. And as no stone of this kind exists within hundreds of miles of this locality he concluded that there must have been some kind of a commerce between these different points. He left probably five thousand specimens, estimated to be worth thousands of dollars.

Mr. Hovey was passionately fond of nature; of the natural growth of the forest. He admired the large oaks, deplored the destruction of the forests and always delighted to converse with any one who had collected prehistoric relics. Many an odd shaped stone, passed over by others, he discovered to have been an implement used by some unknown people who inhabited the country, centuries before Coronado's fruitless expedition. He had extensive correspondence with Professor Ritchie" and Captain E. A. K. Killain, of Alma, Kansas, and the late Captain Robert Henderson, of Junction City, who was interested in erecting several costly monuments in memory of Coronado's expedition to the interior of Kansas in 1541. One of these, (a costly granite monument) was erected in Logan Grove, two miles south of Junction City, by Captain Henderson, on his farm.

Mr. Hovey also had considerable correspondence with J. V. Brower, the Minnesota archaeologist, whose researches in 1896, and a few years later, developed much of interest concerning Coronado's march to the junction of the Republican and Smoky Hill rivers in search of Quivera, and not only was he in touch with that gentleman but with the following noted institutions of learning: the Smithsonian Institute, Washington D. C; Cornell University, Utica, New York; Phillipsburg Academy, Andover, Massachusetts; Peabody Museum, of Harvard; Imperial Academy, St. Pettersburg, Russia; Leland Stanford University, Stockton, California; and University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

While Mr. Hovey had a general store at White Church, he also gave much attention to farming and fruit growing. That he was honored and respected by his neighbors and acquaintances was amply attested by the large attendance from all parts of the county at his funeral. He was laid to rest with Masonic honors, in the old Indian cemetery near his late residence. The funeral was conducted by Rev. George Gale, of Maywood and Rev. Mr. Litchfield, of Rosedale.
Thus ended his career of usefulness on earth, and while he may have made a few mistakes in life, he was a man of high ideals and as a former neighbor, Mr. Litchfield said, Mr. Hovey never harbored an ill feeling toward any one, and no one in the community ever suffered for anything if Hovey knew it His name will be spoken, and his work referred to by historians long after many men of his time, who piled up millions of dollars shall have been forgotten.

His large collection of relics can now be seen in the Kansas University, of Lawrence. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 634-637)


He whose name initiates this review has gained definite prestige and success as one of the representative attorneys and counselors at law in his native county and city, though he was reared elsewhere. He returned to Kansas City in 1896, in which year he was admitted to the bar, and here he has since been engaged in the active general practice of law in which he has gained a large and important clientage-his precedence and success offering the best voucher for his ability and sterling personal characteristics.

James L. Smalley was born in Kansas City, Kansas, on the 5th of December, 1875, and is a son of Henry H. and Josephine (McGrew) Smalley, of whose five living children he is the eldest. The father was born in the state of Vermont and came to Kansas City, Kansas, in the early 70s. He became one of the leading contractors of the rapidly growing city, and here he secured the contract for the construction of the first street curbing in the place. In later years he has built up a large and prosperous enterprise as a contractor in the supplying of railroad ties, and he has maintained his residence in Springfield, Missouri, since 1891. He served as a valiant soldier of the Union in the Civil war and was the standard bearer of his regiment, with which he participated in many of the important engagements marking the progress of the great conflict through which the integrity of the nation was perpetuated. He is a stalwart Republican in his political proclivities and is an appreciative and valuable comrade of the Grand Army of the Republic. He removed with his family from Kansas City, Kansas, to Sedalia, Missouri, in 1876, and he has since continued to maintain his home in the latter state. In Kansas City was solemnized his marriage to Miss Josephine McGrew, daughter of Hon. James McGrew, former lieutenant governor of Kansas. Hon. William Walker, one of the early governors of Kansas and a man of great influence in the state, married an aunt of Henry H. Smalley and after her death he wedded her sister.

James L. Smalley was about one year old at the time of the family removal from Kansas City to Missouri, and he passed his boyhood and early youth in Sedalia, that state, in the public schools of which city he gained his preliminary educational discipline, which was supplemented by a thorough course of study in Mountain Grove Academy, that state, in which institution he was a student for five years. He was then matriculated in the celebrated University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, and completed the prescribed course in its law department, in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1896 and from which he received his well earned degree of Bachelor of Laws. He was admitted to the Michigan bar upon his graduation and in the autumn of the same year he returned to Kansas City, the place of his nativity, and was forthwith admitted to the Kansas bar. Here he has made of success not an accident but a logical result, as he has been zealous and indefatigable in the work of his chosen profession, in connection with which he has gained recognition as an effective trial lawyer and well fortified counselor, with the result that his clientage is of appreciative and representative order. He is liberal and progressive in his civic attitude, is a stalwart in the camp of the Republican party, is affiliated with Kansas City Lodge, No. 440, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks; and in the Masonic fraternity he has received the chivalric degrees, with incidental affiliation with Ivenhal Commandery No. 21, Knights Templars.

In the year 1905 occurred the marriage of Mr. Smalley to Miss Florence Brous, who was born and reared in Kansas and who was formerly a successful and popular teacher in the Kansas City High School. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 637-638)


One of the most active, busy, and enterprising men to be found in Kansas City, Kansas, is Andrew J. Brugh, whose services as a packer and shipper of household goods, and as a transfer agent, are in constant demand, his adaptability to the business, and his willingness to accommodate, making him popular with the people in general. He was born, January 27, 1877, in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, which was also the birthplace of his father, Jacob Andrew Brugh.

A farmer by birth and breeding, Jacob Andrew Brugh was engaged in his independent occupation in the Keystone state until 1884, when he came with his family to Kansas, locating in McPherson county. Purchasing one hundred and sixty acres of partly improved prairie land, he carried on general farming until 1906, when he disposed of his property in that county at an advantage, and came to Kansas City, Kansas, to live. He paid but four dollars an acre for his land when he bought it, and after adding to its improvements, and placing the larger part of it under cultivation, he received sixty dollars an acre for it, a satisfactory price. He subsequently lived retired in Kansas City, Kansas, until his death, in 1908. He married, in Hagerstown, Maryland, Elizabeth Thompson, who was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and died in Kansas City, Kansas, in 1907. Into their household seven children were born, as follows: Myrtle, deceased, was the wife of D. G. Sell; Minerva, wife of J. R. Ives, of Eureka, Kansas; Andrew T., the subject of this sketch; Paul, deceased; Maurice Ray, of Eureka; John, of Kansas City, Missouri; and Mary, of Kansas City, Missouri.

Andrew J. Brugh was brought up on a farm, and educated in the common schools of his district. At the age of sixteen years he came to Kansas City, Kansas, in search of remunerative employment, and for several years worked in the produce business. Securing a position then as traveling salesman for J. H. Bell, a wholesale coffee merchant of Chicago, he had charge for three years of all the territory west of the Mississippi river. The ensuing three years Mr. Brugh had control of the same territory, being in the employ, however, of J. M. Bour, one of the largest wholesale coffee dealers of Toledo, Ohio. During the last year that he traveled on the road, he established a boarding, livery and sale stable in Kansas City, Kansas, and in February, 1910, started his present business of transferring, storing, packing and shipping household goods, being the first one in that line of work to locate west of Tenth street. Mr. Brugh uses three motor trucks, and two furniture vans in catering to the needs of his patrons, and has more business on hand than he can conveniently care for.

Mr. Brugh married, May 26, 1899, Kate McGee, who was born in Elk City, Kansas, a daughter of Asbury McGee, a native of Indiana. Politically Mr. Brugh is affiliated with the Republican party. Religiously he is a strong believer in the creed of the Dunkards. Fraterally he belongs to the Kansas City, Kansas, Lodge of Ancient Order of United Workmen.


For the past three years George A. Peters has been a conspicuous factor in the development of the industrial prosperity of Bonner Springs, and now holds a position of prominence among its leading business men, being proprietor of the Bonner Bottling Works. A son of Henry C. and Sophia (Vordenholtz) Peters, he was born August 12, 1870, in Liberty, Union county, Indiana.

After his graduation from the Liberty High School, George A. Peters entered the employ of the Deering and International Harvester Company as an office boy. Acquitting himself so ably and faithfully in that capacity, he received well merited promotions, being first made cashier and later becoming assistant general agent. He remained with the company eighteen years, from 1891 until 1908, when he resigned his position and started in business on his own account. Coming to Bonner Springs in March, 1908, Mr. Peters established his present bottling and manufacturing plant, putting in new and up-to-date equipments, and has since built up an extensive and profitable business. His plant has a capacity of from three hundred to five hundred cases, or from seven thousand to twelve thousand bottles per day. He manufacturers soft carbonated drinks of all kinds, keeping five men besides himself busy in filling orders, and employing two teams of horses and a large auto truck which he has had built for delivery purposes. Mr. Peters is located at the corner of Front and Cedar streets, where he has erected a modernly constructed brick building, two stories in height, in connection with which he has a brick stable, twenty-five feet by ninety-eight feet, giving him ample barn room. He is a stock holder and a director of the First National Bank of Bonner Springs, and served two years in the City Council.

In May, 1910, Mr. Peters, with characteristic enterprise, formed a partnership with Mr. George Hafner and embarked in the poultry business on an extensive scale, erecting a large brick building for the purpose. He and his partner handle poultry, eggs and butter, and have built up a substantial trade, handling from three hundred to four hundred dollars worth a week, and using a truck for the delivery of their products in Kansas City.

Mr. Peters married, October 22, 1895, Justine M. Hafner, a daughter of Melcher Hafner, and they have one child, Vertna, born November 3, 1900. Mr. Peters is a Master Mason, having joined Bonner Springs Lodge, No. 366, Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 638-639)


William Robert Banning for many years a resident of Wyandotte county, now deceased, was engaged in various occupations. At one time he was employed as a quarryman; at another as a carpenter and then as a grain elevator man; later he engaged in the confectionery business and subsequently in the dairy business. In each of these various activities he quietly attended to his work, intent on the performance of his duty and desirous of leading a life of rectitude. That he succeeded in his endeavors his host of friends and neighbors bear witness.

Mr. Banning was the son of James and Minerva Banning, residents of Macon county, Missouri, where their son, William Robert, was born July 7, 1853. When a mere lad the family moved to Vernon county, where he attended the public schools and grew to man's estate. On the termination of his school life he gained employment in a stone quarry but soon determined that the life of a quarryman was not the one he would choose to follow. He learned carpentering and for many years he was identified with that trade, his work being skilful and accurate. Again desirous of changing his occupation, he secured a position with an elevator on Genesee street, Kansas City, where he w*" eminently successful in his work, but in May, 1891, he was seriously injured; in the performance of his duties his arm was caught in a set screw, drawn through the machinery and so badly lacerated that n, had to be taken off, the operation being performed at the city hospital. The accident naturally incapacitated him for further mechanical work of any kind, and as soon as he was sufficiently recovered, he opened a confectionary store, which he successfully conducted for a period of two years, at the expiration of which time he moved to South Park and engaged in the dairy business. Commencing with only two cows, he gradually increased his business until he owned twenty-seven cows; and made many pounds of butter a day, which he sold, together with the buttermilk, in Kansas City. When death summoned him he was the proprietor of a thriving business, opposite the Geyser Spas in Rosedale.

On January 16, 1881, Mr. Banning was married in Kansas City to Miss Laura Hawkins, daughter of Bird and Susan (Holloday) Hawkins, old settlers of Pettis county, Missouri, where Miss Laura was born December 4, 1854. When she was only seven years of age she was left an orphan and the little girl succeeded in making her own living until her marriage. Her only daughter, Ida, was born in Belton, Missouri, December 4, 1874, and has been twice married. In 1896 she was united to Lawrence Bock, born in 1870, at Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and later a resident of Kansas City, Missouri. One evening on his return from work he was getting out of the way of a train and was killed by a runaway car. This accident occurred February 11, 1901, and his body was taken to Pennsylvania, where it lies in the cemetery near his old home. The young widow later married Elmer Hite, February 8, 1909, a contractor living at South Park. Mr. and Mrs. Banning adopted a little girl, Delia, born April 9, 1901, now a student in the South Park school.

From his childhood Mr. Banning was a member of the hard shell Baptist church, always an active worker. In his family relations he was ever a good husband and father, affectionate and considerate. His widow carries on the business in which he was engaged at his death; her early experiences stand her in good stead, as through them she is qualified to conduct the business in a successful manner. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages639-640)


John Haff serves as a fair example of what the uneducated German can make of himself in free America-an excellent citizen, with a good home and a respected family.

Mr. Haff was born in Posen, Germany, in 1854. His parents died when he was quite small, and he grew up without educational advantages. Like all young Germans, he served his time in the army, a term of three years. Then, with a spirit of ambition and an eagerness to try life in the western hemisphere, he directed his course to America, and came direct to Kansas, where he found employment in the rolling mills at Rosedale. Later he worked in the Kansas City packing houses, and in 1904 he bought the farm upon which he now lives, eighty acres of choice land near Bethel, in Wyandotte county. Here he raises sufficient stock, cattle and horses, for his farm, and in his fields cultivates a diversity of crops.

Previous to his coming to this country, Mr. Haff married in Germany, Miss Josephine Leavenduskey, who joined him here a year after his arrival, and whose encouragement and help have contributed materially to the success they have enjoyed. Sons and daughters to the number of seven have come to bless their home, as follows: John, Anna, Frank, Mike, Mary, Tony and Martha, and two of the daughters, Anna and Mary, are married and have homes of their own, the former being the wife of C. Gress; the latter, the wife of George Mallott.

Mr. Haff is a devout Catholic and a stanch Democrat. While, as above stated, he grew up without schooling, he has learned life's lessons in the army, the mill, the packing house and the farm; his contact with the world has made him broad and generous, and he ranks today as one of the best citizens of Prairie township. (History of Wyandotte County, Kansas and It's People, by Perl W. Morgan, Vol. II, 1911, Pages 640-641)



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