Pages 275-276, 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.




JOHN B. FERGUS, of Deer Creek township, well known in horticulture and floriculture in Allen county, settled upon the west half of the northeast quarter of section 29, township 23, range 20, his present home, in January 1889. He was a resident of Anderson county before coming into Allen and prior to that time occupied the old Younger homestead in Jackson county, Missouri. He was a resident of Missouri from 1879 to 1882 when he took up his residence in Anderson county, Kansas.

Mr. Fergus was born in Washington county, Pennsylvania, March 24, 1858, and is a son of Thomas P. Fergus, of the same county and state. The latter was born in 1832, was engaged in the calling of a farmer and in 1879 went into Missouri. His last years were spent in Anderson county, Kansas, where he died in 1888. He married Abigail Bradford, a daughter of John and Annie (Hamilton) Bradford, lineal descentants[sic] of the famous Massachusetts family of Bradfords. John Bradford of this mention was a soldier in the war of 1812, was born in Pennsylvania and died near Dayton, Ohio. The children of Mr. and Mrs. John Bradford are: Elizabeth Friend, of Wyoming, Ohio, aged eighty-two years, still living; Margaret Service, of Dayton, Ohio, eighty years; Martha Jane Hamilton, Ft. Wayne, Indiana, seventy-eight years; Rev. D. G. Bradford, Springfield, Illinois, seventy-six years; James H. Bradford, Bellbrook, Ohio, seventy-three years: Ebenezer E. Bradford, Centerville, Ohio, seventy years; Annie C. Ewing, missionary in Cairo, Egypt, sixty-eight years; Abigail Fergus, Glenlock, Kansas, sixty-six years; Agnes Andrews, Bellbrook, Ohio, sixty-three years.

The Fergus' are of Scotch lineage. Thomas Fergus, our subject's paternal grandfather and a Scotchman, sought the United States about 1803, stopped a season at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, but made his permanent home in Washington county, that state. His sons and daughters were: Martha, who married James Taggart; Margaret, wife of Thomas McCall; Sarah, who married Joseph Donaghy; Nancy, who became Mrs. James White; Hugh; John and Thomas P.

The surviving children of Thomas P. and Abigail Fergus are: Anna, wife of Alexander McKitrick, of Anderson county, Kansas; J. Bradford, our subject; Samuel and Hugh, of Anderson county; Sadie, wife of Robert Furneaux, of Allen county, and Thomas, of Reno county, Kansas.

John B. Fergus has passed his life a student of the field and farm.


His first independent enterprise was one calculated to make him a sheep grower and he came into Allen county in 1881 and bought land for the purpose of ranching it with sheep. The year happened to be a dry one and the venture proved a failure. He sold out what remained of his stock and for the next five years "knocked about." He was married in 1887 and the next year, but one, moved to the farm that is now his attractive home. General farming and horticulture with a recent entry upon the fine cattle business are matters which claim all his time. From a modest beginning he has gained on the world steadily and surely and has not only demonstrated his success with the soil but has established and maintained a public confidence that is worthy of emulation.

May 20, 1887, Mr. Fergus was married to Emma Z. Nicholson, a daughter of Cornelius J. Nicholson, who came to Allen county in 1866 and settled in the valley of the Little Osage. He emigrated from Pike county, Illinois, where he was married to Sarah Hoover. Their children were: Scott W., deceased; David and Emma Z.; Robert, and Hattie, wife of Robert Richardson, of Ripley, Oklahoma.

Mr. and Mrs. Fergus' children are: T. Earl; Ruth, deceased; Hugh; Fanny Fern, and Lou J., since deceased. The Ferguses are among the staunch and active Republicans.

Previous | Home | Next