Pages 423-425, 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.




ALTES H. CAMPBELL.—Conspicuous among the attorneys at the bar of the Seventh Judicial District of Kansas is Altes H. Campbell. Born in Allen county, two miles east of Carlyle, on the 4th of May, 1862, he is all but a pioneer. His father, James H. Campbell, located in that county in 1860, settling on Deer Creek where, between farming and law,


he reared and maintained his family. He was an emigrant from Switzerland county, Indiana, where he was born in 1818 and reared and educated. He was a son of William Campbell, a relative of Colonel Harrod, who founded Harrodsburg, Kentucky, and with others came from South Carolina to aid in the founding of that city, about the time of Boone's period of greatest adventures. James H. Campbell was admitted to the bar in Indiana. In 1866 he was elected county attorney of Allen county and when his term expired he was sent to the Kansas State Legislature by the Republicans of his county. He practiced law till 1872 when he engaged in farming and stock raising in Anderson county, Kansas, afterwards removing to Colony, in that county, and later to Iola where he died in 1889. In 1860 Bertha A. Simpson became the wife of James H. Campbell. She was a daughter of Matthew Simpson, a cousin of Bishop Simpson, of the Methodist denomination. Matthew Simpson was one of the early educators of Allen county and was, for a time, Superintendent of Public Instruction. He was a man of strong personality, was a pioneer among teachers and impressed the boys and girls of the early seventies, in Allen county, with the seriousness of his cause.

Of the seven children born to James H. and Mrs. Campbell only three survive: Altes H., Mary J. and James H. Campbell. The last named is one of the firm of Campbell & Burrell, druggists, of Iola, and the mother, brothers and sister all live in the same yard.

A. H. Campbell passed his early life amid the environments of the farm. The common schools are responsible for his education and when he left the farm it was to take a clerkship in Colony, Kansas. Following this employment he was placed in charge of a steam hay-press and operated it till 1882 when his uncle, "Cy" Simpson, appointed him to a position in the Iola post office. His preparation for the law had been going on all the time he was baling hay around Colony and his spare hours while in the post office were passed pouring over Blackstone, Walker's American Law etc. In 1884 he left the post office and went into the office of A. C. Bogle, a leading attorney of Iola at the time, and under his direction carried on a course of systematic reading, continuing the same later with Hon. Henry A. Ewing, a prominent member of the bar of Allen county. In August 1885 he was admitted to the bar before Judge Leander Stillwell.

"Alt" Campbell was poor, almost to poverty, when he was struggling for admission to the bar, and after his admission found it necessary to supplement his legal earnings by taking employment outside of his profession. He mastered stenography by study from the book without a teacher and did considerable court reporting. A few months he was cashier of the Bank of Allen County and when Iola took on her first Democratic postmaster he was invited into the office to give direction to the initial movements of the office force. Among the first acts in his professional career was to form a partnership with Hon. Charles B. Benton, then of Iola but now Assistant Attorney of the Missouri Pacific Railroad with office at Fort Scott. The firm of Benton & Campbell gave way and that of Campbell & Hankins succeeded it. Campbell & Porter followed and was terminated


by the untimely death of John Porter. In 1900 Mr. Campbell associated with him John F. Goshorn, County Attorney of Allen county.

Mr. Campbell is admitted to practice before all the courts of the state, and in the United States Circuit and District courts. From 1895 to 1897 he served as County Attorney, being elected as a Democrat, and has filled the office of City Attorney of Iola three terms and was elected Mayor of the city in April 1901. Politically he was always a Democrat until the adoption of the Chicago platform in 1896 when he left that party and cast his lot with the Republicans.

June 12, 1888, Mr. Campbell married Mrs. Mary Jeanette English, a daughter of Cyrus S. Potter, one of the well known citizens of Iola and formerly of Watertown, New York. Mrs. Potter was Miss Adelaide E. Wafiel and their children are: "Nettie" Campbell, wife of our subject; Bert Potter, of Iola; Irwin Potter, of Coffeyville, Kansas, and Rev. Leslie Potter, Rector of Grace Church in Kirkwood, Missouri. Mr. and Mrs. Campbell's children are Leslie J., Carl B. and Helen.

In summing up the life of one whose race is only half run it is our privilege to touch slightly upon the attributes which form the mental composition, and thus the character, of him whose name introduces this review. Reared without wealth, but in honor, Alt Campbell chose the paths of rectitude and virtue. He was ever a gentleman and when his preparation for life had been completed and he took his station among the men of his county it was with the determination to shun duplicity and avoid dishonor. In his profession his clientage has been drawn to him not only because he was learned in the law but because of his sincerity as a counsellor and of his standing and ability before the court.

As a citizen of Iola Mr. Campbell has an abiding faith in the future of his town and whatever aid he can render is done without expectation of reward. He is a Mason and Odd Fellow, a Workman and a member of other fraternal associations. In the business circle of his community his substantial worth is a matter of common recognition, and in his home his family possesses a loyal, indulgent and devoted head.

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