Pages 386-387, 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.


Lewis I. Drake



REV. LEWIS I. DRAKE.—A man of ripe scholarship and marked executive ability whose life has been consecrated to the cause of the Master and the uplifting of men, there is particular propriety in here directing attention to the life history of the Rev. Lewis I. Drake, who for nine years served as pastor of the Presbyterian church in Humboldt and is now connected with the field of missionary labor in Neosho Presbytery. He has devoted himself without ceasing to the interests of humanity and to the furtherance of all good works. His reputation is not of restricted order, and his power and influence in his holy office have been exerted in a spirit of deepest human sympathy and tender solicitude. There has not been denied the full harvest nor the aftermath whose garnering shall bring sure reward in the words of commendation, "well done, good and faithful servant."

Lewis I. Drake was born in Hamilton county, Ohio, August 7, 1826, a son of Jonathan Drake, who was born in New Jersey in 1782, a native of Huntington county. When nine years of age he accompanied his father, William Drake, of New Jersey, to the Buckeye state. The family located near Cincinnati, and when Jonathan Drake had attained to manhood he began business for himself by shipping flour and pork down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, by flatboat, to New Orleans. He afterward engaged in farming in Ohio, following that pursuit until his death, which occurred when he was forty-seven years of age. He married Miss Eliza Mead, of Connecticut, who was born June 10, 1793, a daughter of Jeremiah Mead, of the same state. Her mother was a descendant of the Pilgrims who made the first settlements in New England. To Jonathan and Eliza Drake were born five children, two of whom are living: Harriet A., wife of Dr. H. J. Cox, of Tamaroa, Illinois, and Rev. Lewis I. Drake. Jeremiah M. Drake, who was a Presbyterian minister, died in Lima, Indiana, in 1873. The mother passed away the same year. The father was a Whig in his political affiliations, and in his religious belief was a Presbyterian, rearing his children in the faith of that church.

Rev. L. J. Drake spent his boyhood in Springdale, Hamilton county, Ohio, near Glendale, was graduated in the seminary of that place and afterward continued his studies under the guidance of his pastor. At the age of seventeen he began teaching in the academy of which he was a graduate and afterward followed the same profession in other places. Later he


devoted some time to the study of medicine. When about twenty years of age he resumed college work in Hanover and was graduated in 1852. He is also a graduate of the McCormick Theological Seminary of Chicago, and therein was prepared for the high calling to which he has devoted his entire life. After being ordained to the ministry he accepted the pastorate of the Presbyterian church at West Liberty, Logan county, Ohio, where he remained for thirty years, greatly beloved by his people and held in the highest esteem by those of other denominations. He afterward spent two years as the minister of the Presbyterian church in Holden, Missouri, and then resigned, accepting the pastorate of the church in Humboldt, Kansas, where he continued for nine years, doing effective service in the upbuilding of the church. He was formerly connected in a prominent manner with educational work in Ohio. He aided in establishing a college in Yellow Springs, that state, and in connection with ex-President Hayes was a member of the board of trustees of Wooster University, of Wooster, Ohio. In 1880 the degree of Doctor of Divinity was conferred upon him by Hanover College. In 1895 he resigned his charge in Humboldt and removed to his farm four miles south of Iola, since which time he has been engaged in missionary work in this presbytery.

Rev. L. I. Drake was married in Mt. Pleasant, Hamilton county, Ohio, May 10, 1849, to Miss Mary Ann Gaston, who was born May 9, 1830. Her father, David B. Gaston, was born in Hamilton county, November 29, 1803. Our subject and his wife have become parents of ten children, four of whom are yet living: John W., a dentist now practicing in Chillicothe, Ohio; Mary, wife of J. B. Chamberlain, formerly of Humboldt, but now of Chicago; Mrs. Esther E. Aspinall, of Iola, and Ralph R., who has resided in Allen county since 1884. Ralph was born in West Liberty, Ohio, February 24, 1864, and drove alone in a wagon from the Buckeye state to Kansas. He has been twice married. He wedded Blanche Cain, of Ohio, and to them were born two children,—Hazel and Lewis. After the death of his first wife, he wedded Agnes Wagner, of Toledo, Ohio, formerly of Pennsylvania. Their children are Margaret and Frederick. Both Ralph Drake and his father have been lifelong Republicans. Our subject has never failed in any duty of citizenship, and has ever kept well informed on the issues of the day. He is a man of strong convictions yet of an abiding sympathy. As a speaker he is forceful and eloquent and his every utterance rings with sincerity and honest conviction. His mind, carefully disciplined, analytical and of broad ken, his deep perception and quick and lively sympathy, make him a power in his field of labor.

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