TOWNSHIP SETTLEMENT & ORGANIZATION - WINDSOR TOWNSHIP
Windsor Township was organized April 11, 1871 with Isaac B. Todd, Trustee, John. W. Tull, clerk and Henry D. Wilkins, Treasurer. The township was fifteen miles square, and had a population of seventy-nine people. John W. Tull named the township in compliment to Windsor, Illinois, where he had formerly resided. Benjamin H. Clover was the first township justice, and claim contests and trials were held in his house. Ephraim Simpson was the first Justice of the Peace appointed by Governor Osborn. The Federal census of 1880 gives the population as 1028 and that of 1934 as 740. (In 1875, 416)
Lazette, first named Gazette, was the metropolis and earliest pioneer town of northeastern Cowley County. It was laid out in 1871 by Saml M. Fall & Henry D. Wilkins (and William R.) but was never incorporated. In October 1869 John W. Tull had preempted a claim that joined the village on the west, and had built the first house in Grouse Valley. For eight or nine years Lazette was an active place. The settlers for miles around gathered there and discussed and planned the organization of the township. A post office was established and mail was delivered by mail carrier.
H. D. Gans had the first hotel. John W. Tull taught the first school. Elder William Gans preached the first sermon. Benjamin H. Clover built a sawmill, which was a great convenience to the settlers in obtaining lumber for their claim houses. Ed Sutton established a gristmill that ground both corn and wheat, with a capacity of 75 barrels per day. Elder J. H. Irvin established the Church of Christ in 1871. The early baptisms were held at the Grouse Creek Ford two miles north of Cambridge. Rev C. A. Stine, a circuit rider preacher, organized a Methodist Mission.
When the K. C. L. & S. K. railroad was built south of Lazette, and the town of Cambridge laid out, most of the buildings were moved to that locality, and this early day landmark was eventually destroyed.
The site was plotted May 3rd 1880. The north half of the land on which the town was built was preempted by Solomon Hisler and the south half by M. V. Gardenhire. The Town Company was comprised of Joseph P. Craft, Benjamin H. Clover, O. B. Gunn, Sam'l M. Fall, Joe Clover, McDonald Stapleton, Sam'l B. Sherman and Henry F. Hicks. Benj. H. Clover was president, Mc D. Stapleton, secretary & J. P. Craft, treasurer. Mrs. Benjamin Clover gave the town its name.
The first train service was in February 1880. The business men of 1880 were MERCHANDISE, McDonald Stapleton, C. W. Jones & F. Henrion; DRUGS, P. G. Rule; HOTEL & LIVERY STABLE, Joseph P. Craft; LUMBER; P. T. Walton; FLOUR MILL, Benjamin H. Clover; BLACKSMITH, Cass Patterson; PHYSICAN, J. P. Pleasants; NEWSPAPER, Henry F. Hicks and R. E. Hicks.
The first postmaster was D. A. Dale who resigned in a few months, and A. J. Pickering succeeded him, serving until his death occurred in 1881. R. E. Hicks was the next incumbent and resigned in a few months and was succeeded by Henry F. Hicks who served four years.
The village of Torrance was built on the railroad between Cambridge & Burden and promised to outrival Cambridge in the beginning, but a townsite controversy arose, and Cambridge prospered at its expense. It was named for E. S. Torrance who served as District Judge in 1880.
Benderville was a village very early established on the Gardenhire farm, a short distance west of the present site of Cambridge. It consisted of a sawmill, a store of general merchandise, and two or three other small business enterprises. It derived its name from the notorious Bender family who in 1870 located seven miles northeast of Cherryvale on the main traveled road frequented by travelers bound for the Osage country. This family terrorized the settlers for some time as one person after another disappeared until upon investigation eleven victims, all travelers were found murdered and their bodies buried in the ground surrounding the Bender home. Some living in or near the village that was to be known as Benderville found a skull bleaching on the prairie plains and as a joke hoisted it on a stick or pole at the entrance of the village and some travelers passing through were much perturbed at the ghastly site, and hastened their departure, calling the place Benderville. In a short time this was the accepted name of the village. It was abandoned shortly after the advent of the railroad and the business concerns were moved to Cambridge or Burden.
Windsor was classed as one of the important geographical points in the early history of the township, but is now listed as one of the "lost towns" of the state.
Grand Summit was established in 1881 and as the name indicates is at the peak of the Flint Hills, "natures most conspicuous landscape feature of the southwest." It dates back to the days of the longhorn Texas Ranger and has become historical as the favorite shipping point for livestock pastured in this hill country, which produces an abundance of bluestem grass in the grazing season. Kansas rates as one of the four largest cattle producing states in the union, and many thousand head of cattle are brought to these pastures each season and fed and fattened for the livestock market. For years one of the duties of the station agent or his assistant was to count all incoming cattle as they were unloaded, and one agent (J. P. Alvis) carries in his record one count, which ran for thirty-six hours.
(This (TOWNSHIP SETTLEMENT AND ORGANIZATION WINDSOR TOWNSHIP) document was transcribed from a hand written file, ENV 057, located in the COWLEY COUNTY MUSEUM, Winfield, Kansas, signed W. E., dated February 28, 1938
-- by - Sam L. Pickens, Jr. February 05, 1991
Edited and transcribed to Word by Lewis Pickens March 14, 2003
W. E. 2-28-1938
BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD - WINDSOR TOWNSHIP
SAMUEL M. FALL (1838-1929) Preble County, Ohio, and was the son of John and Anna Fall. In 1863 he was married to Miss S. M. Dale, daughter of Washington and Elizabeth Dale. Mr. & Mrs. Fall came to Kansas in 1871 and located on a claim in the Grouse Valley north of Cambridge. Mr. Fall was a man of high ideals, and statesman like ability, and manifests a superior wisdom in the settlement of problems that confronted the pioneers. He was soon accepted as a leader in this part of the county. He was one of the founders of the town of Lazette, and also a member of the town site company of Cambridge. He filled many local offices, and was elected to the state legislature in 1889. He was a Republican in politics, and he and Mrs. Fall were devout members of the Presbyterian Church. He accumulated a large tract of valuable land, and his farm was one of the most attractive and best improved in the county. In 1900 he sold his holdings to Wm. E. Brown and moved to Cambridge, and later to Winfield. Mr. & Mrs. Fall were the parents of one daughter, Blanch, who died in 1880, aged 10 years.
WILLIAM BAUM, who came as a youth from the state of Indiana in 1878, was reared in their home and (was) always regarded as a member of their family. On July 31, 1887 Mr. Baum was married to Miss Fredrika Hedrick of Cambridge, Kansas, and they were highly accepted citizens of eastern Cowley County for many years prior to moving to the vicinity of Akron, Kansas.
HENRY DEPEW WILKINS (1833-1929) was born in Fremont, Ohio and was a son of John and Angeline Wilkins. He was a cousin of the celebrated statesman, Chauncy M. Depew. With his parents he moved to Michigan in early youth, and in 1857 migrated to Coffey County, Kansas. Here he was married to Miss Katherine Marrs in 1860. Mr. & Mrs. Wilkins and their two sons came to Windsor Township in May 1870 and he homesteaded on Grouse Creek. He was a man of strong personality and had an optimistic disposition, and had every confidence in the future development of the county. He was one of the organizers of Windsor Township, serving as the first township treasurer, and served in other local offices. He was also one of the founders of Lazette. Kindly and unselfish by nature, he befriended many individuals during the early days of the settlement. Mr. & Mrs. Wilkins were members of the Christian Church, and he had the distinction of being the first man in Cowley County to be baptized by immersion. Mr. Wilkins sold his homestead to D. L. Snowden and purchased a farm in the northwest corner of the township that had been homesteaded by T. J. Jackson.
L.G.(GRANT) WILKINS (1863-1936) son of Mr. & Mrs. H. D. Wilkins was born in Coffey County, Kansas, and reared in Windsor Township. For fourteen years he was identified with the teaching profession, being employed in various schools in eastern Cowley County and serving with ability and efficiency. In 1891 he purchased a farm in Silver Creek Township that had been preempted by John Clover in 1871 and became associated with the civic and political life of that community. Politically he was a Republican, and in 1913 was elected County Treasurer, and the family moved to Winfield to reside. Two years later he was reelected, and upon his retirement served 1917 to 1927 as deputy county treasurer. He was elected State Representative and served one term, and in 1929 was elected State Senator and served until 1933. He was a state oil and gas inspector at the time his death occurred. Mr. Wilkins was a member of the Christian Church and active in various branches of church work. He was widely and favorably known in Southern Kansas and had a broad knowledge of the early history & traditions of his native state. He married Miss Carrie Leach, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. John Leach, pioneers of Silver Creek Township. They were the parents of Jessie, (Mrs. John Gessler), Roy Wilkins and Ross Wilkin.
BENJAMIN H. CLOVER (1837-1899) was born in Franklin County, Ohio and was educated in Jefferson Academy. In 1859 he was married to Elizabeth Lilly Cullumber who was born in Madison County, Ohio. Soon after their marriage they moved to Illinois where they remained until 1870, then Mrs. Clover and their children returned to Ohio temporarily. Mr. Clover, in company with several young men from his locality in Illinois, drove three teams belonging to him to Cowley County and located on Grouse Creek. He was unique in-as-much as he had $3,000.00 an amount possessed by very few pioneers. He purchased several claims adjoining his own, from the original owners. In March 1871 his wife and children joined him in the new country. Mrs. Clover was a gifted woman, and met the problems of the settlement in a courageous manner that did much towards furthering the welfare of her community. The lumber for their first home was hauled from Emporia. Mr. Clover devoted his time to farming, and was successful with his crops. In 1874 at the time of the grasshopper invasion his crops of corn were well matured and not damaged by the hoppers. He sold the corn for $2.00 per bushel. Mr. Clover was active in all the affairs of the valley and was president of the Cambridge Town Company and operated a sawmill at old Lazette. In politics he had formerly been a member of the Greenback Party but became prominent in the Farmer's Alliance and held both state and national offices. He was one of the organizers of the Populist or People's Party in 1889, and was elected to Congress from the third Congressional District in 1892. Mr. & Mrs. Clover were the parents of seven children, Ella, Thomas H., William T., John F., Charles A., Susie (Mrs. John Dossett), Frank Clover (deceased). John M. Clover, a pioneer hardware merchant of Burden was a brother and Joe Clover, a member of the Cambridge Town Company was a cousin. Mrs. Rebecca McDowell & Sarah A. Stoner of Winfield were sisters of Mrs. Clover, and William Cullumber of Cambridge was a brother.
THOMAS H. CLOVER, the eldest son of Mr. & Mrs. Benjamin Clover was identified with activities of eastern Cowley County during his lifetime. He was engaged in farming and stock raising with success, and entered enthusiastically into the local affairs of the community. He held various township offices and was an official in the Cowley County Livestock Association for a number of years. In 1901 he was elected County Commissioner from his district and served approximately twelve years, much of the time presiding as chairman of the board. His wife was Miss Martha Reed whom he married in Cowley County.
CHARLES C. CLOVER has always been identified with Cambridge and Windsor Township where practically his entire life has been spent. He was reared on the family homestead and naturally chose that vocation for his adult activity, and has a farm that is well adapted to agricultural pursuits. As a youth he had much practice (training in the livestock industry), which fitted him to be known as one of the best judges of livestock in the southwest. He has an extended acquaintance with stockmen throughout that region, and is highly regarded by them, as well as the citizens of his immediate neighborhood. Mr. Clover has always manifested a helpful interest in his community, and participated in local affairs. His wife was Miss Mary E. Foust, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. S. J. Foust of Omnia Township. They are the parents of three children, Ruth (deceased), Paul Clover and Elizabeth (Mrs. Clifford Hancock).
JOHN W. TULL (1843-1919) was born in Shelby County, Illinois. He was reared and educated in Illinois, and during the civil War served in Co. K, 126th Reg. Illinois, Vol. INF. In 1866 he was married to Miss Nancy Simpson, and they were parents of two sons, Braz D. and Bruce Tull, both of whom were reared in Windsor Township. In March 1869 Mr. Tull and his wife came to Kansas stopping at Eureka where he planted a crop, after which he came on a tour of inspection to Cowley County. In 1869 he located on a claim on Grouse Creek and after building a house brought his wife from Eureka, which was fifty miles distant, with the nearest market and post office. Ephraim Simpson and Joseph Sweet and his wife, who were relatives of Mrs. Tull, accompanied them. All settlers who located prior to July 15, 1870 were expected to pay head money to Chetopah, Chief of the Osages. Mr. Tull possessed a receipt for the payment of $5.00 to the chief, which was supposed to insure him against molestation. Mr. Tull was a man of prominence during the constructive period of the county. He was the first clerk of Windsor Township and the first teacher in the valley and is remembered as a man who was active in the organization of many local groups for the betterment of his neighborhood. He served as Republican Central Committee man and held various local offices. Mrs. Tull died in 1887. Later he married Miss Laura Truitt of Shelby County, Illinois.
JOSEPH P. CRAFT (1831- 1886) was born in Ohio, where he was reared and remained until 1875 when with his family he migrated to Cowley County, and first located on a farm ten miles north of Cambridge. Later the family moved in the vicinity adjoining Lazette. Mr. Craft was prominently associated with the founding and organization of Cambridge and was elected as the first treasurer of the Town Company. He built the first building in the town and established the first hotel And also conducted a livery and feed stable at an early date. His wife was Miss Eliza Winters. She was born in Ohio. Their children were Emma, Mrs. C. W. Jones, May, Mrs. Sam Statton, Mrs. James Ollinger, John Craft, David Craft and I. W. Craft.
DAVID CRAFT for many years was engaged in the mercantile business in Cambridge and was one of its leading citizens taking an active part in all local affairs. He was also successful in agricultural pursuits and owned a tract of valuable land north of Cambridge. He later moved to Winfield and engaged in the grocery business. His wife was Miss Laura Johnson. Mr. Craft's death occurred in 1935.
I. W. (ZED) CRAFT was born in Mt. Vernon, Knox County, Ohio in 1854. When he was twenty-one years of age he came to Cowley County with his parents locating in the vicinity of Cambridge. In 1884 he moved to Kiowa County and remained eleven years. He then returned to Windsor Township where he has since resided and been identified with the affairs of the community and successfully engaged in farming. Since his retirement he resides in Cambridge. On January 26, 1878 he was married to Miss Jane Holloway. They have celebrated their sixty-first wedding anniversary. Mr. & Mrs. Craft are the parents of seven children, Esther (Mrs. Clarence Close), Edna (deceased), Norman, Alfred, Earnest, Joe (deceased) and Emory (deceased).
McDONALD STAPLETON was born in 1847 in Hancock County, Illinois and came to Kansas in 1858, locating in Wyandotte County, where he completed his education. In 1871 he came to Cowley County and established a general store in Lazette. He also owned a farm in Silver Creek Township. Mr. Stapleton was a practical man of affairs, outstanding in the organization days of Eastern Cowley County, and active in securing the railroad through that section. In 1880 he built the first store building in Cambridge and moved his mercantile stock to the new town. He was the secretary of the town site company. He later moved to Cedarvale and embarked in the hardware business. He married Miss Rebecca Ramage in 1877 and they were the parents of one son, Earl Stapleton.
HIRAM D. GANS was born in 1844 in Indiana, and was the son of William & Melinda Gans. He was educated in Knox County, Illinois. Mr. Gans located in Eastern Cowley County in 1871, and conducted the first hotel in Lazette. He was prominent in that part of the county, and held several elective offices. In 1875 he was elected Probate Judge, and served five successive terms. After his election he moved to Winfield to reside. His wife was Miss Mary Mahee. They were the parents of four children. William Gans, who preached the first sermon in Lazette was his father. They were members of the Christian Church.
SAMUEL B. SHERMAN was born in 1842 in McHenry County, Illinois. He served in the Civil War in Co. K., 27th Reg. Iowa, Vol. Inf. Soon after the close of the war he came to Kansas from Iowa, & settled in Marshall County, In 1871 he located in Windsor Township. He was one of the organizers of the town of Cambridge and was appointed station agent of the new railroad in 1881. In partnership with Henry F. Hicks he became owner of the Cambridge News in 1882. They also operated a land & loan agency. He was a man of ability and held various appointive and elective offices in Windsor Township. He was married to Jane Sutton in 1872.
DR. J. A. CHAPMAN (1843-1909) was born in St. Joseph County, Indiana. He was the son of Jarel and Elizabeth Chapman. Dr. Chapman came to Kansas in 1855, and was located in Douglas County until the border trouble prompted him to leave the state. He later located in Miami County where he remained until the outbreak of the war, and then enlisted in Co. A., Mo. Nat. Guards. At the close of the war he went to Wyandotte County and began the study of medicine. After graduation he practiced two years in Independence, Kansas, and then moved to Canola, Kansas where he practiced his profession and conducted a drug store. In 1874 he moved to Lazette, and again conducted a drug store, but afterwards engaged in general merchandising. When the railroad was built the family moved to Burden & he continued in general merchandising. He was a shrewd businessman & one of the constructive builders of the town. He held various town offices and was Treasurer of the town council for several consecutive years. His sons Bert and Bruce succeeded him in business. In 1873 he married Miss Lucena E. Hefly of Independence. They were the parents of six children, Bert (deceased), Hattie (Mrs. R. C. Shawhan), Ed (deceased), Bruce, Ralph and Elsie (Mrs. Floyd Bolack (deceased).
DR. J. H. PLEASANTS was born in 1835 in Green County, Kentucky and was the son of William & Nancy Pleasants. He held the commission of 1st Lieutenant in Co. E., 12th Ky. Vol. Inf. during the Civil War. Dr. Pleasants came to Cambridge in 1880 and was the first physician to practice in the town after its organization. He had an extensive practice described as "covering a radius of eight miles". His wife was Miss Emma Wilkerson.
DR. P. G. RULE first located in Lazette, where he practiced his profession and conducted a drug store in connection. He later moved to Cambridge and continued in the drug business. Mr. & Mrs. Rule were the parents of one daughter, Ida Rule Smith.
SOLOMON HISLER was a native son of Ohio, and came to Cowley County in 1872, preempting a claim, a part of which is embodied in the town site of Cambridge. His wife was Miss Catherine Benedict also of Ohio. They were active folks in the early days of Lazette, and factors in the organization of the Methodist Church, and other community groups. Mr. Hisler served in the Civil War from Ohio. He was a member of the G. A. R. and Mrs. Hisler was active in the W. R. C. They had one foster daughter, Ella, who married Dr. Williams, a pioneer physician of Lazette. She afterwards became the wife of W. G. Tunstall. After Lazette was abandoned the Hislers moved to Burden and conducted the Hisler House. This was the second hotel established in the town. The town company built it. J. H. McCumber moved a house in from the country & started the first hotel of the town.
P. T. WALTON was the early day lumberman of Cambridge, coming there from Dexter. He later went to Burden and was connected with the G. B. Shaw Lumber Company for some time. He was one of the charter members of the Burden State Bank organized in 1884. In 1886 this bank purchased the Bank of Dexter and Mr. Walton became president of that institution. The name was changed to the Dexter State Bank. He later was elected President of the Burden State Bank, and acted in that capacity until 1893 when he sold his banking interests & moved to Oklahoma again engaging in the lumber business. He established a chain of lumberyards, and enjoyed a profitable patronage. Mr. Walton was considered one of the most energetic and farseeing businessmen of his day. His interests were varied and he was successful in his undertakings. He was twice married. His first wife was Miss Emma Richardson. Some time after her death he married Miss Elizabeth Gilbert of Dexter. His sons Ed, Clyde and Esli Walton succeeded him in the lumber business.
A. B. BOOTH (1847-1926) was born in Pennsylvania and located in Windsor Township in 1870, before the township was organized. He engaged in farming, and was a man of splendid character, and interested in all movements for the betterment of his locality. He served the township in various official capacities and was a leading man in his community and held in high esteem by the citizens. He later moved to Burden and was identified with the affairs of that vicinity for some years prior to his death.
DANIEL WEAVERLING was born in Pennsylvania and lived in Illinois and Missouri prior to moving to Kansas in 1878, and locating 2 1/4 miles east of Cambridge. His wife was Miss Charlotte Kissel. They were the parents of nine children. Mr. Weaverling engaged in farming and the family occupied an important place in the affairs of Eastern Cowley County during the pioneer days. Frank, Will A. and Scott Weaverling were all reared in that community and engaged in various business activities. Two daughters Susie (Mrs. Frank Stall) and Martha (Mrs. Wert) were also residents of that community for many years.
MANLEY HEMINGWAY was born January 24, 1836. He served with the union forces during the Civil War and in 1870 the family came to Windsor Township from near Ottumwa, Iowa. Mr. Hemingway was a man of splendid character and ability and was elected County Surveyor in 1871 at the second regular election held in the county. At that date the office of surveyor was a very important one as boundary lines were frequently a matter of controversy and survey. Mr. Hemingway was also one of the early day teachers of Eastern Cowley. He passed away March 16, 1881. Mrs. Hemingway was born February 13, 1839. She was a woman of charming personality and well typified the admirable characteristics of the pioneer woman, and contributed of her time & means to many worthwhile projects and was an inspiration to her neighbors and friends. They were the parents of two children Ida (Hamm) who taught in the schools of Cowley County for many years, and Charles Hemingway who moved to Mead County, Kansas some years ago. Thomas Hemingway, a bachelor, brother of Mr. Hemingway, lived in the home many years.
HENRY F. HICKS (1855-1938) was the son of Elisha and Sara Hicks and was born in Knox County, Missouri. In 1876 he married Miss Mollie Golliher daughter of James & Catherine Golliher. He came to Eastern Cowley County in 1880 and was identified with the organization and growth of Cambridge from its inception. He and his brother R. E. Hicks established the first newspaper in Cambridge in 1880 and in 1882 he and Sam'l B. Sherman became the owners and the paper was known as the Cambridge News, and the publication continued for several years. They were also partners in a land and loan business. Mr. Hicks was appointed postmaster in 1881 and served four years. Govenor Glick appointed him Notary Public in 1883. He was of a legal turn of mind and highly competent in an advisory capacity in town and township affairs. He held various offices of consequence and trust during his many years of residence in Cowley County. For a number of years prior to his death he was the sole survivor of the group of men who composed the Cambridge Town Company or who are listed as the first businessmen of the town. He was twice married, his second wife being Mrs. Anna D. Woods. He was the father of four children of whom one survives, Annabelle (Mrs. Harry B. Gailey).
JOHN B. BROOKS (1806-1882) was born in Pennsylvania but spent his most active years in Grainger County, Tennessee. Although well advanced in years he served with the Union forces during the civil War from that state. In the fall of 1870 Mr. Brooks and his wife accompanied by the families of James A. Goforth, Nathaniel Brooks and A. P. Brooks left the state of Tennessee for the new and undeveloped state of Kansas. They first stopped in Miami County and here Mr. Brooks sustained injuries that prevented him from continuing his journey to Cowley County with the other members of his family in the spring of 1871. Some months later he arrived in the county and preempted a claim on Grouse Creek north of Dexter. This he sold later and bought a claim on the creek in the vicinity of Lazette, where he remained until his death. During his decade of citizenship in Windsor Township he was prominently identified with the organization and development of that section of the county. His wife was Miss Elizabeth Sellers and they were the parents of one daughter Narcissa (Mrs. James A. Goforth) and five sons A. P., T. J., G. A., M. L. and Nathaniel Brooks, all early pioneers of Silver Creek Township.
GEORGE W. GARDENHIRE (1841-1905) was born near Chatanooga, Tennessee. When he was twelve years of age the family moved to Lawrence, Arkansas. During the Civil War he served in the Confederate Army for four years in Co. E., Arkansas Mounted Rifleman. He was in the Department of Tennessee under Generals Bragg, Hood & Joseph Johnston. In 1869 he migrated to Franklin County, Kansas and remained until the summer of 1870 when with his family, consisting of his wife and three children and uncle, Van Gardenhire, he came to Eastern Cowley County. He purchased a quarter section of land from T. J. Raybell and took up residence in a log claim house that was on the place. They made the trip with ox teams and drove 300 head of cattle. In the course of the year that followed 265 of the 300 cattle died of Texas fever. This handicapped Mr. Gardenhire about his improvements as all his money was invested in the cattle, but he gradually improved his farm and added to it until he owned a large tract of splendid valley land. Joseph Wheeler Park of the Old Soldiers & Settlers Association of eastern Cowley was located on his farm. In his earlier years Mr. Gardenhire was a Democrat in politics but embraced the cause of the Populist Party in Cowley County and he became state organizer in 1889. His wife was Miss Rebecca Jones whom he married in 1886. She was a sister of Charley w. Jones.
WILLIAM E. BROWN was born in 1854 in Sandusky County, Ohio and was of German descent. He was educated in Ohio and remained in his native state until 1884 when he came to Windsor Township. Although Mr. Brown is not of such early citizenship, he purchased land that had been preempted, or formerly owned by four of the most prominent pioneers of the upper Grouse Valley, John Tull, Sam'l M. Fall, Henry Wilkins & Benjamin H. Clover. This comprised a tract of about 1400 acres. In addition to this he owned about 1800 acres of pastureland in the Flint Hills. Mr. Brown was an alert, resourceful man and engaged in farming and stock raising industry, and was equipped to feed and ship large herds of cattle each season. He brought some thoroughbred stock from Ohio, including Hereford cattle and Poland China hogs. His sons were associated with him in business. Mr. Brown married Miss Barbara Gries in Ohio. She was a native of New York.
FRANK STALL (1854-1934) came to Windsor Township in 1881 and located north of Cambridge and engaged in farming and raised sheep. He fed and shipped large droves of sheep annually. Mr. Stall was a man of exemplary character and was held in high esteem by the citizens of Eastern Cowley County. His wife was Miss Susan Weaverling, who was a pioneer of Windsor Township. They moved to Winfield in 1891.
N. B. HOLDEN was born in 1853 in Jefferson County, New York. He was the son of Josiah and Sarah Holden. In 1877 he was married to Miss Nannie Jones and they were the parents of two daughters. In 1881 the family came to Windsor Township and located in section 15. Mr. Holden engaged extensively in sheep raising, handling an average of 3000 head and shipping 15000 lbs of wool yearly to eastern markets.
A. L. FINNEY was born in 1864 in Indiana. In 1871 he came to Kansas and lived on a ranch eight miles north of Cedarvale. His grandfather had homesteaded this ranch. Soon after Cambridge was established in 1881 he located in the town and plied his trade as a stonecutter helping build many of the first stone buildings of the town. Mr. Finney has held a prominent place in the constructive building era of Eastern Cowley County, and always manifested a helpful interest in all local affairs. In 1885 he married Miss Emma Sutton, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Edward Sutton who were among the earliest settlers on Grouse Creek locating four miles north of Cambridge in 1870.
W. R. BEDELL (1825-1911) was born in Bath County, Kentucky. In his early child hood his parents moved to Des Moines, Iowa. In 1871 he came from Neosho County, Kansas, and homesteaded a farm four miles northeast of Cambridge, which he consistently cultivated and improved and here he held residence for many years. Mr. Bedell lived a useful life and was a highly respected citizen. He was married three times; his first wife was Miss Nancy Freeman. In 1866 he married Miss Rebecca McArton. They were the parents of two children, Joanna, Mrs. W. F. Moore and William Bedell. Some years after her death, Mr. Bedell married Mrs. Anna E. Straugham who was a sister of Mrs. George W. Gardenhire and Chas. W. Jones.
JOSEPH H. SWEET was born in Illinois and served in Co. C., 140th Illinois Vol. Inf. during the civil War. Soon after the close of the war he came to Kansas locating at Eureka in Greenwood County. In 1869 he was married to Miss Rhoda Simpson, daughter of Ephraim & Lucinda Simpson in Shelby County, Illinois. In the late summer of that year Mr. Sweet in company with John W. Tull and Ephraim Simpson, came to Cowley County and settled temporarily near the south border of the county where they cut and put up a quantity of hay near the mouth of the Walnut River. The Indians set fire to the stacks and destroyed them. The men abandoned this location, and came to Grouse Valley and were the first to homestead in the vicinity of Lazette. The remainder of their lives was spent in this neighborhood. Mr. Sweet was a dependable man, and possessed the qualities that typified the best in the characters of the men who were instrumental in conquering the plains of Kansas. Mr. & Mrs. Sweet were the parents of three daughters, Ella (Mrs. Frank Cooper), Grace (Mrs. James Smith), Bertha (Mrs. Ed Dwyer) and three sons William E., George (deceased) and Edgar Sweet was born and reared in Eastern Cowley County and remained a citizen of that locality for many years, much of the time being employed as station agent at Cambridge. He was a leading citizen and active in all-local affairs. He later embarked in the oil business and was located in different cities in Oklahoma. He now has residence in Winfield, Ks.
JOHN DAWSON came from Lucas County, Iowa in 1880 and located on a farm north of Cambridge, and was associated with the civic life of that neighborhood. Mr. Dawson was a man of thrift and energy and lived a useful life among the early settlers. He was the father of three daughters, Mrs. Mary Adkins, Mrs. Ella Adkins and Mrs. Gladys Kelley and three sons, Clark, Ed and Jay Dawson all of whom were reared in Windsor Township.
THOMAS J. JACKSON came from Indiana to Kansas in the spring of 1872 and first located in Cherokee County where he planted and harvested a crop. In the later fall he journeyed on to Cowley County and homesteaded a claim in the northwest corner of Windsor Township which later was owned by S. M. Wilkins. Mr. Jackson engaged in farming, and for a while conducted a store at Baltimore succeeding Jesse Junkins who was the first storekeeper there after the place was established. Mr. Jackson married Miss Martha Crissenberry in Indiana. They were the parents of four children, Jane who married Henry Basswather, a native of London, England, Kate who married Marion Savage, Thomas J. Jackson Jr. and Henry Jackson.
A. L. BRANSON (1860-1926) was born in Greenwood County, Kansas. His parents were born near Kougsberg, Norway, and came to America in 1843, and lived in Wisconsin & Minnesota before coming to Greenwood County in 1858. Mr. Branson was a brother of Henry R. Branson and Gilbert Branson who were among the earliest settlers of Eastern Cowley County. In 1882 he located in Windsor Township purchasing his land from Charles J. Phenis who homesteaded it in 1870. Mr. Branson was a man of splendid character and the affairs of the community were benefited through his vision and forethought. He engaged extensively in the livestock business, and for many years he was considered one of the leading cattlemen of Eastern Cowley, and enjoyed the respect and confidence of his associates. His integrity was above reproach and his generosity seldom equaled. In 1909 Mr. Branson was elected Sheriff of Cowley County and reelected in 1911. At that date the family became residents of Winfield, but he continued active in the livestock business. In 1886 he was married to Miss Laura Elliott, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Dempsey Elliott. Mrs. Branson was one of the early educators of the County, and since her early girlhood has been a recognized factor in many worthwhile projects for the betterment of the community in which they resided. They were the parents of two children, Mildred, Mrs. Ray Stuber and D. H. Branson who operates a livestock ranch in the vicinity of Latham, Kansas.
JESSE W. HIATT was born in Surry County, North Carolina in 1850. He remained in that state until 1866 then moved with his parents to Iowa where he remained until 1871, then came to Kansas & preempted 160 acres of land in the vicinity of Grand summit. Mr. Hiatt's sole capital when he arrived in Cowley County was 85 cents, which he carried in his pocket. At the time of his arrival buffalo were still seen, hunted and killed on the plains. Mr. Hiatt's success as a farmer and dealer in livestock was phenomenal, and he enlarged his possessions until he owned more than 8,000 acres of land in Eastern Cowley and was regarded as the cattle king of the Flint Hill region. He was of splendid physique, genial personality, and manifest a superior shrewdness in the judgment of livestock, and the possibility for the expansion of that industry in the grazing country. He was interested in the civic affairs of his section of the county and active in its early organization, and held various appointive and elective offices in Windsor Township. Mr. Hiatt was married to Miss Mary Brock in Cowley County in 1875. They were parents of nine children. After retiring from the ranch, the family moved to Winfield and Mr. Hiatt engaged in the Real Estate business and L. L. Hiatt, the eldest son succeeded his father in the management of the ranch in the Flint Hills. He occupies a prominent place in the affairs of his locality, and he has had an active part in the oil development of the county, being associated with his brother-in-law, Sam'l Elliott, and Walter Sidwell in that industry, and operating as the S. H. E. developing company.
H. L. SICKS came from Indiana to Windsor Township in 1878 and located three miles south of the present site of Cambridge. He engaged in farming, but for a number of years his major pursuit was the operation of a stone quarry in which he employed several men. The stone was lifted from the pit with a windlass. Mr. Sicks found a ready market for his output, much of it being handled by the railroad company. Many of the early buildings in Cambridge were built of stone from this pit. The limestone of the county is of peculiar composition, being soft when first removed from the quarry and easy to cut & dress, but when exposed to the air becomes hard & brittle. Mr. Sicks is a well-known citizen of Eastern Cowley County. Energetic and practical, and has contributed materially to the development of the township and is highly regarded by his associates.
THOMAS WALCH (1825-1899) was born in England and came to America at an early date. In 1872 the family became residents of Lazette. Mr. Walch was a casket, or coffin maker and engaged in this trade in the early days. He moved to Burden soon after that town was founded and continued the same occupation. Mr. & Mrs. Walch were the parents of one son, Charles I. Walch who was one of the pioneer teachers of the county. He married Cora Moore, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. R. H. Moore.
JOSEPH SHAW (1824-1892) came to Windsor Township in 1877 from Johnson County, Missouri and located five miles north of Cambridge. During the civil War he served in Co. G., 118th Reg. Illinois Inf. with the commission of Captain. With his company he was stationed at Baton Rouge, La. when he received his discharge. Mr. Shaw possessed many sterling qualities and was prominently identified with the early settlement of the valley. School district #16 was located on his land and named "Shaw Schoolhouse" in compliment to him. He brought to Kansas a sword, which he prized very highly as a memento of his days in military service. He enjoyed hunting and on one occasion when the assessor asked "do you own any dogs?" He replied, "Yes, sixteen of them." This proved to be the number of trail hounds he had at that time. In 1845 he was married to Miss Elvira Catlin of Muskingham County, Ohio. They were the parents of one daughter who became the first wife of Elisha Fadley. Mrs. Shaw's death occurred in 1897.
JOHN HILLIER (1847-1923) was born in Somersetshire, England. He came to America in 1871 and settled in Rock Creek, Ashtabula County, Ohio. In 1873 he was married to Miss Annie Jamima Davis (1845-1936), who was born in Birmingham, England. After enduring he hardships and cold of northern Ohio for nine years the family moved to Kansas in 1880. Mr. Hillier homesteaded a claim of prairie land near Windsor schoolhouse three miles east of Cambridge. He broke the sod, and engaged in farming depending on the production of corn mostly for several years. Mr. & Mrs. Hillier were both citizens of thrift and energy and they transported to the prairie plains many admirable traits of their Mother Country. They were helpful to their neighbors and enjoyed the friendship of the early settlers of their locality, and were held in high esteem by all who knew them. They moved to Cambridge when Mr. Hillier retired from the farm. They were the parents of five daughters, Alice Thompson, Edith Allen, Flora Dwyer, Mabel Craft, Lydia A. Kolde (deceased) and Ada May Hillier (deceased) and two sons, Fred Hillier and Walter Hillier.
GEORGE W. DAWSON (1832-1919) was born in Ohio, where his boyhood was spent. In 1872 he came to Cowley County and homesteaded a claim in the Grouse Creek valley. Mr. Dawson engaged in farming and was prominently identified with the early settlement of the eastern part of the county. He merited the high esteem in which the pioneers held him. His wife was Miss Mary J. Dossett whom he married prior to their migration to Kansas. They were the parents of three daughters, Melissa, Martha and Margaret Ellen (Mrs. A. B. Simon) and one son, Charles Dawson.
JAMES H. (IOWA) SMITH (1823-1887) was born in Westfield, Delaware County, Ohio where he was reared and educated. In 1846 he was married to Eunice Foust, daughter of Henry and Mary Olds Foust. The family held residence in Michigan and Iowa before moving to Kansas in 1872. They joined the families of R. F. Burden, Marion Savage & Ad. F. Smith, who had migrated the previous autumn. Mr. Smith homesteaded in Windsor Township and became an active factor in the organization of neighborhood affairs. He was interested and active in helping secure the bonds for the K. C. L. & S. K. railroad, and identified with the founding of the Methodist Church at Lazette & Mt. Vernon. He engaged in farming, and did much toward the improvement of his land, enclosing the entire acreage with hedge fence, and planting a fine orchard. The farm was in the Mt. Vernon school district, and the family attended community gatherings there after the schoolhouse was built in 1879. Mr. & Mrs. Smith were the parents of seven children, six of whom were born in Delaware County, Ohio, Annis (Mrs. A. S. Wilson), Maxa (Mrs. J. B. Huff), Edith (Mrs. D. Collins), Ad F. Smith, Al S. Smith, Henry E. Smith and Miles L. Smith.
MILES L. SMITH (1855- 1898) came to Kansas with his parents when he was seventeen years of age. He was one of the early teachers of the county, teaching in various districts. When he became of age he filed on a claim in Silver Creek Township. This farm is still owned by his heirs. He was prominently associated with the affairs of the Grand Prairie neighborhood and active in promoting all projects for the improvement of the community. In 1882 he was married to Miss Emma E. Burden, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. R. F. Burden. They were the parents of two daughters, Marice (Mrs. A. C. Savage) and Florence (Mrs. Fred Grant) and two sons, Foster Smith and Jas. I. Smith.
W. F. (FRANK) MOORE was born in Knox County, Kentucky in 1857. He is the son of Mr. & Mrs. L. A. Moore. The family moved to Lincoln County, Kentucky during his early childhood. In 1878 the family moved to Eastern Cowley County where Mr. Moore purchased a farm from H. Jones, which was located ten miles northeast of Cambridge. Mr. Moore is a leading citizen of Windsor Township and has always maintained a keen sense of civic responsibility in his locality. He has sponsored many worthy causes, which has benefited the community in which he has lived for more than fifty years. Mr. Moore engaged in different branches of agriculture and for a time operated a general merchandise store in Cambridge. In November 1891 he was married to Miss Joanna Bedell, the daughter of Mr. & Mrs. W. R, Bedell.
JOSEPH FRANCES DOHERTY (1864-1926) was born in County Killarney, Ireland. He came to the United States in 1877, and became a naturalized citizen in early manhood and had been a resident of Cambridge many years. He performed a prominent part in the constructive days of the county being a stonemason with unusual skill. He was a man of good habits and highly respected by the citizens of his locality. In 1889 he married Miss Magaline Albert, daughter of Prof. and Mrs. H. T. Albert.
CHARLIE W. JONES (1849-1918) was born in Raleigh, North Carolina where his early boyhood was spent. He came to Kansas prior to the Civil War and was in Lawrence at the time of the Quantrell raid in August 1863. He left the scene of attack on a mule, riding bareback out of the terrorized town. Later he enlisted in Co. K., 15th Kans. Cav. serving as bugle boy, because of his extreme youth he was not acceptable in the ranks. After his discharge from service he went to Arkansas where he remained until 1872 when he came to Cowley County. He was active in locating the village of Burdenville on the farm of his brother-in-law, George Gardenhire, where he conducted a general store. In 1880 when Cambridge was established, he moved his stock of merchandise to that place, but in a short time went to Burden, and afterwards was identified with the town and continued in the mercantile business. The firm Jones and Snow built a fine stone building on the prominent corner of the business section and they were the leading merchants of the town and active in the civic affairs of the community. Mr. Jones was a member of the G. A. R. and also held membership in several other organizations. During the organization of the county he helped in the government survey of the country, and also helped in the survey of Oklahoma. He was twice married. His first wife was Emma Craft, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Craft. They were the parents of Ed Jones & Maud Jones Musson (both deceased). After the death of Mrs. Jones he married her cousin, Belle winters (1864-1936). She was the daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Isaiah Winters and was born in Kasson, Minnesota. The family came from Missouri to Windsor Township in 1879. Mrs. Jones entered the mercantile field in early life, and had an exceptionally successful career extending over more than four decades. Throughout the years of her business activities her contact with the public led to many enduring friendships with people in all walks of life. She supported all projects for the betterment of the town and occupied a prominent place in the life of the community. Mr. & Mrs. Jones were the parents of four children, Ruth Jones Fitch (deceased), Sam Jones (deceased), Paul and Harold Jones.
W. R. McCRABB (1857-1936) was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He came to Windsor Township in 1882 and located northeast of Cambridge. He engaged in farming, but devoted much attention to stock raising, and was successful in this pursuit. Mr. McCrabb was one of the dependable men of his locality and active in all neighborhood affairs. Mrs. McCrabb died in 1918. They were parents of five sons, J. F., W. D., W. 0., L. L. and Lewis Austin McCrabb (deceased).
GEORGE W. (TUCK) WILSON (1842- 1936) was born in Sparta, Illinois, and was the son of John A. and Mary Wilson. Mr. Wilson was reared and educated in his native state and had a broad knowledge of its early history. In 1866 he was married to Miss Anna Rigden. They were the parents of five children, the three youngest dying in early childhood. In 1884 the Wilson family came to Windsor Township locating on a farm that had been preempted by George Balon. Mr. Wilson engaged in farming for several years, and devoted much attention to the livestock industry. The family later became citizens of Burden and was associated with the early affairs of that community. Their two daughters were Lou (Mrs. J. M. Henderson) and Maud (Mrs. W. J. Frazier).
MATT JACKSON came from near Kokomo, Indiana, and located in the Grouse Valley in 1872. He was a farmer, and a popular man in his vicinity. His past experience and sound reasoning were valuable assets in the formation period of the county. Both Mr. & Mrs. Jackson was members of the Methodist Church, and associated with its organization in Windsor Township. They were the parents of three sons, Fred, Lester and Omar Jackson. They were all highly respected citizens during their residence in Eastern Cowley County.
AMBROSE SHELLEY came from Mahaska County, Iowa to Cowley County at an early date. He homesteaded a claim on the northern border of Windsor Township. D. D. Cheever later owned this farm. Mr. Shelley and his family lived in a dugout for some time after their preemption but as they prospered in their agricultural endeavors, they were able to build a comfortable frame dwelling and otherwise improve their claim. Mr. Shelley married Miss Almedia Smith prior to their migration from Iowa.
JASPER N. SHELLEY (1843-1937), a brother of Ambrose Shelley also was a resident of Windsor Township, homesteading in the same vicinity. He had served with the Union Forces from Iowa during the Civil War. He married Miss Parmelia smith who lived in Harvey Township.
GEORGE M. SHELLEY the youngest of the three brothers came to the neighborhood after the location of the two brothers. He lived much of the time in Harvey Township and was an active citizen in that locality. He was a man with superior musical ability, and held a leading place in developing the musical talent of the pioneers. He conducted singing schools in various districts, and organized and directed a band in Atlanta soon after the town was established. His wife was Miss Effie Cooper.
DWYER - In the spring of 1870 the Dwyer family consisting of Mrs. Mary Dwyer, her daughter, Lottie, and three sons, W. E. (Eber), J. C. (Calvin) and George Dwyer located on Grouse Creek in the vicinity of Lazette. They had migrated from Missouri in 1860 and had been residents of Paola, Kansas for ten years. The old log house built in 1870, which was their first home in Cowley County, stood as a landmark until recently. The Dwyer family occupied a leading place in the pioneer life of their community. The sons engaged in farming and held positions of honor and trust among their associates. They were members of the Church of Christ and were instrumental in advancing its teachings in the county. J. C. Dwyer was an Elder in the church and one of the earliest preachers in that locality. LOTTIE DWYER became the wife of William Sipe.
GEORGE DWYER was a resident of Windsor Township for more than sixty-five years and his life was one of usefulness and benefit to the community. He contributed of his time and ability to various enterprises for the building of the county. Mr. Dwyer remembered attending the first Fourth of July Celebration of the county, which was held in Winfield in 1870. In 1877 Mr. Dwyer was married to Miss China V. Baldwin (1859-1935), daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Frank W. Baldwin, early pioneers of the county. Mr. & Mrs. Dwyer were the parents of eight children, William (deceased), Edd 0., Lottie (Mrs. J. C. Jackson, deceased 1905), John, Morten, Weaver, Archie and Otis Dwyer.
JOHN DUDLEY was a native of Cole County, Illinois. He located in Windsor Township in the spring of 1870, and was active and prominent in the early development of the township. He later sold his homestead to Benjamin H. Clover.
(This BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD WINDSOR TOWNSHIP was transcribed from a hand written file, ENV 057, signed W. E., dated 02/28/38,
located in the COWLEY COUNTY MUSEUM, Winfield, Kansas.)
--by-- Sam L. Pickens, Jr. February 05, 1991
Edited and transcribed to Word by Lewis Pickens March 13, 2003