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.

Joseph Levi Stevens

JOSEPH LEVI STEVENS. For a number of years Joseph L. Stevens has had a prosperous real estate business at Stockton, and in many other ways has been identified with the life of that community. He served as postmaster here, was earlier a postmaster in Nebraska, and has spent most of his life in these two states.

He was born at Almoral, Delaware County, Iowa, April 12, 1859. He is descended from an Englishman who in colonial times settled in New England. There were two other brothers, one of whom located in Pennsylvania and one in the South. His great-grandfather, Samuel Stevens was captain of a company in the Revolutionary war, participated in the capture of Ticonderoga, and for many years cherished the gun and powder horn which he took from a British officer at that time.

Levi Otho Stevens, father of Joseph L., was born at Hartwick, Vermont, in 1822. He was a first cousin to Minerva Stevens, mother of ex-President Arthur. Upon reaching his majority Levi O. Stevens left Vermont and went out to Dubuque, Iowa, and spent most of his active career as a farmer at Almoral. He was a graduate of Vermont University at Burlington, voted independently, was a member of the Grange and of the Congregational Church. He married in Iowa Jeannette Lease, who was born in Johnstown, Vermont, in 1833 and died at Blair, Nebraska, in 1910. Mr. Stevens died at Blair, Nebraska. Their children were: Ezoa, who died in Sac City, Iowa, wife of Walter Hitchcock, a farmer; Laura, wife of E. B. Kenyon, a retired merchant living at Los Angeles; Joseph L.; Sarah, wife of J. B. Adams, owner of a line of grain elevators and a resident of Omaha; Charles O., a government architect at Washington, D. C.; T. F., a capitalist living at Norfolk, Nebraska; P. H., an educator whose home is at Santa Monica, California.

Joseph L. Stevens acquired his education in the public schools of Iowa. At the age of twenty-one he left his father's farm and in 1881 became a homesteader in Pierce County, Nebraska. He proved up on his quarter section, lived on it and farmed for five years. Then for a time he was in newspaper work at Plainview, Nebraska, held the office of postmaster under President Harrison four years, and after that was in the real estate business at Plainview until he removed to Stockton in 1902. Since then he has used his experience and capital to build up a large real estate business, and is recognized as an authority on realty values all over this part of Rooks County. He served as postmaster by appointment from President Taft, holding the office four years, and has also been a justice of the peace. He has, besides his own home near the high school, another dwelling, also a business building on Main Street, and owns a stock and grain farm of 650 acres in Rooks and Trego counties. He is a republican and a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

December 6, 1881, in Plainview, Nebraska, Mr. Stevens married Minnie Holley, daughter of Henry and Hannah (Eldred) Holley, both now deceased. Mr. Holley was a Nebraska farmer. Mrs. Stevens died February 17, 1895, the mother of five children: Otho, who is in the mailing division of the Omaha postoffice; Beatrice, who died at the age of one year; Roxie wife of Dr. T. C. Hinkle, a physician and also author of several books, living at Waterville, Kansas; Rella, wife of Velpeau Rice a rancher at Bogue, Kansas; and Minnie, who lives at Portland, Oregon, and will finish her course as a graduate nurse in 1920.

October 11, 1899, at Scribner, Nebraska, Mr. Stevens married Miss M. Allie Parks, daughter of Samuel B. and Mary E. (Robinson) Parks. Her parents now live in Stockton where he is a retired farmer. Samuel B. Parks went out to Nebraska and settled at Fontanelle in Indian times, acquired land there, broke out the prairie and became a prosperous farmer. Mr. and Mrs. Stevens have one daughter, Dorcas Geneva, born April 27, 1911.

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