Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p., [155] leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.

William O. Brooks

WILLIAM O. BROOKS is one of the younger men in active and responsible business life in Western Kansas, and is a member of the mercantile house of Brooks & Sons at Morland.

He is a native son of Western Kansas and was born in Tescott in Ottawa County in April, 1890. He is of English ancestry. His great-grandfather Brooks spent all his life in England. His grandfather, John Brooks, was born in that country in 1813, and when a young man emigrated to Canada, was married in the Province of Quebec, and soon afterward took his bride to New York State. In 1856 he established a pioneer home at Stoughton, Wisconsin, where he had a farm, and he lived in different parts of Wisconsin for several years. He died at Stoughton in 1893. He saw some active military experience during his lifetime, was a republican in politics, and a member of the Congregational Church. John Brooks married Frances Churchill, who was born in Ireland in 1830, and died at Stoughton, Wisconsin, in 1917. Of their eight children George R. Brooks, of Morland, Kansas, is the oldest. Mary, the next in age, lives at Manhattan, Kansas, widow of J. L. Dow. William was a merchant at Marquette, Kansas, where he died at the age of fifty years. James is a retired farmer at Stoughton, Wisconsin. Joseph is sexton of a cemetery and resides in Iowa. Wesley was a farmer and died in Montana. Edward is a merchant at Tescott, Kansas. Ella is unmarried and lives with her brother James at Stoughton, Wisconsin.

George R. Brooks was born in New York State July 10, 1847, and was nine years of age when his parents moved to Wisconsin. He attended the public schools of Rock County, Wisconsin, a high school at Evansville, Wisconsin, and his early life was spent on his father's farm. When about twenty-four years of age he went to Northern Iowa, conducted a store there several years and in 1886 came to Kansas and conducted a mercantile business at Tescott. He was almost the first merchant to handle a stock of goods in that community. In 1913 he moved to Moreland and established the firm of Brooks & Sons on Main Street. He has been a trustee of the Methodist Episcopal Church for many years and in politics is a republican. He is affiliated with Tescott Lodge of the Ancient Order of United Workmen. Besides his position as a merchant Mr. Brooks is an extensive grain and cattle farmer and owns an 880-acre ranch in Wichita County, Kansas. In 1880, in Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, he married Miss Augusta Steltzner, daughter of Ernest and Emily Steltzner. Her father moved to Tescott, Kansas, in 1892, was a farmer and is now deceased. Her mother is still living at Morland. George R. Brooks and wife had three children: George R., Jr., a member of the firm Brooks & Sons, is a graduate of Bethany College at Lindsborg, Kansas, left his established business to enter the United States army and went with the Expeditionary Forces to France. Oda is a graduate of Bethany College at Lindsborg and is the wife of Ray Entsler, a farmer at Tescott. William O. is the youngest.

William O. Brooks attended the public schools in Tescott, also the high school, and took a two years' course in the State Agricultural College at Manhattan. He finished his education in Bethany College at Lindsborg, where he graduated in 1910, and at once became associated with his father in business, entering the store at Morland which his father had founded. Since then under the name Brooks & Sons this has become the largest general department store in the town. His father, G. R. Brooks, Sr., W. O. Brooks and G. R. Brooks, Jr., comprise the firm. They have an appreciative trade drawn from a country eighteen miles in a radius around Morland.

Mr. Brooks is an independent republican in politics. He is affiliated with Morland Lodge of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, and is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. May 4, 1913, at Morland, he married Miss Grace White, daughter of Isaac and Ethel (Norrish) White. Her mother, now deceased, was born in England. Her father is a commission merchant at Morland. Mr. and Mrs. Brooks have one daughter, Ethel Darlene, born April 11, 1916.

Page 2292.