Pages 341-342, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Allen and Woodson Counties, Kansas: embellished with portraits of well known people of these counties, with biographies of our representative citizens, cuts of public buildings and a map of each county / Edited and Compiled by L. Wallace Duncan and Chas. F. Scott. Iola Registers, Printers and Binders, Iola, Kan.: 1901; 894 p., [36] leaves of plates: ill., ports.; includes index.




ZAR E. BENNETT—Inscribed on the roll of pioneer settlers of southern Kansas appears the name of Zar E. Bennett, who came to this county at a very early period in its development. He was born in western New York, June 15, 1853, and when five years of age came with his parents to this State. He belongs to a family noted for longevity. His father, Zar Bennett. Sr., is yet living at the age of ninety-three years, and is a resident of Iola. He was born in Connecticut, and after arriving at years of maturity wedded Sarah J. Hinman, of New York, whence they removed to the Sunflower State in 1858. Mrs. Bennett's death was occasioned by accident. Her clothing caught fire and burned her badly, and this, together with the nervous shock, terminated her life December 25, 1898, when


she was seventy-one years of age. They had three children: Zar E., Fred S. and Leslie, both of Iola.

The subject of this review was reared on the home farm and early began work in the fields, assisting in the work of plowing, planting and harvesting. When crops were garnered in the autumn he was allowed the privilege of going to school, but the educational advantages in Kansas at that time were rather meager, owing to the unsettled condition of the country, but through study in the school-room and in his leisure hours, Mr. Bennett prepared himself for teaching and followed that profession for five years, thus gaining capital sufficient to enable him to get a start in life.

As a companion and helpmeet on life's journey he chose Miss Libbie M. Reno, a native of Indiana, the wedding being celebrated in 1875. The lady is a daughter of P. G. and Lucinda (Clark) Reno, the parents being natives of Indiana, whence they came to Kansas during the early girlhood of Mrs. Bennett. They have five children now living, namely: W. C., of Richmond, Kansas; Mary J., wife of M. M. Hart, of Iola; Mrs. Eliza Cook, of Oklahoma; S. D., of Kingman, and Libbie M., the honored wife of our subject.

Although Mr. Bennett started out on his business career at the very bottom round of the ladder he has steadily worked his way upward and now stands on the plane of affluence. He has always followed farming with the exception of a short period devoted to conducting a meat market in Iola, in partnership with M. M. Hart, but not being satisfied with that enterprise he returned to his farm on Deer Creek. Subsequently he sold his land in the river bottom and purchased one hundred and fifty-three and a half acres on Martin Creek where he has developed one of the best farms in Geneva township. He has plenty of bottom land for cultivation, while his residence stands on an elevation, commanding an excellent view of the surrounding country. His home stands in the midst of richly cultivated fields and it is evident to the passerby that the owner follows progressive methods in his farming operations. Politically Mr. Bennett is a stalwart Republican and has twice served as trustee of Geneva township, leaving the office as he entered it with the confidence and good will of the public. The history of Allen County is familiar to him from pioneer days and his support and co-operation have been given freely to many measures which have contributed toward the general good and to the upbuilding and prosperity of the county.

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