Pages 640-641, 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.




Among the setlers[sic] of Woodson county whose residence spans a period of thirty years within her borders is the gentleman whose name introduces this personal sketch. April 1, 1871, he entered the county and the same spring took a claim in Liberty township. Of this he made a farm and upon it he resided till his removal to the county seat to enter upon the discharge of his duties as a county official.

February 3, 1842, Judge Dutro was born in Muskingum county, Ohio. His antecedents were of the first settlers of that county, his paternal grandfather having gone there at seven years of age. The latter, George Dutro, was born in the state of Pennsylvania in 1793, grew up on the Muskingum river and passed his life a farmer. His family of seven sons were: David, George, Samuel, John, Elmer, Martin and James; the second in the list being the father of our subject.

George Dutro, who passed many of the active years of his upright life in Woodson county and was therefore well known, was born in the year 1820, and died February 28, 1899. In 1845 he left his native heath and emigrated to Bureau county, Illinois. He had been reared to the pursuits of agriculture and to those he devoted himself in the new western state. When the Civil war came on he enlisted in September 1862 in company C, Sixty-six Illinois volunteers. His regiment formed a part of the Sixteenth corps, army of the Tennessee. His service covered the period from his enlistment to the end of hostilities when he was mustered out and returned to civil pursuits. In 1869 he left Bureau county, Illinois, came to Warrensburg, Missouri, and remained there till early in 1871 when he transferred his interests to Woodson county and to a farm in Liberty township.

The mother of Judge Dutro was Elizabeth Neff who died in Woodson county in 1873. Her other children are: Sarah, wife of W. F. Marple; Frank, of Adair county, Iowa, and an ex-soldier of the Rebellion; Elmer, of Leadville, Colorado; Charles, of Canon City, Colorado; Susan, who married Enoch Newcomb, of Garden City, Kansas: Mary P., of American Falls, Idaho, and Elizabeth, widow of Thos. H. Lamborn, of Woodson county.

Judge James Dutro was reared and educated in Bureau county Illinois. His education was of the intermediate or common school sort. When the Rebellion broke out he entered company C, Sixty-six Illinois volunteer infantry. Col. Burge's "Western Sharpshooters." He served his full enlistment of three years and was at home on a recruiting expedition when


his time expired. From the date of his discharge till he left Illinois Mr. Dutro's business in the main was farming. He was elected tax collector in Bureau county and served one year. In 1870 he left, started on his westward trip to Kansas. He paused on his journey in Missouri and entered the county of Woodson the spring following as before related.

Judge Dutro has been more or less mixed up with the politics of Woodson county for many years. His sympathy and affection have always been with the dominant or Republican party and his counsels have had their weight and influence in determining the policy and management of local campaigns. In 1884 he was appointed a county commissioner to fill a vacancy and Sheriff Keck made him his deputy in the office during his official term. In 1895 he was elected probate judge and in 1897 was re-elected to the position. In 1899 he was chosen a justice of the peace of Center township and in 1901 was again elected to the same office. In January, 1899 he was appointed by Gov. Stanley a member of the Board of Managers of the State Soldiers' Home and was reappointed to the same board in 1901.

Judge Dutro was married February 14, 1864, in Bureau county, Illinois, to Phebe S. Brown, a daughter of Nathan Brown one of the pioneers of that county. Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Dutro, viz: Otis W.; Arthur L.; Pauline D., wife of Carlos B. Randall, of American Falls, Idaho, and Mary Edith, who is Mrs. Jesse Camac, of Yates Center.

Judge Dutro is a Mason, a Knight of Pythias and a Red Man and a Past Commander of Woodson Post 185, G. A. R.

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