Pages 395-396, 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 C. HOLTZ, of Iola, retired farmer, was, for many years, one of the progressive and successful farmers of Woodson County. He located just east of Neosho Falls in 1884, where he purchased a farm and where he is yet a large land owner. The business of grain and stock raising he has carried on during his active life most successfully and when he retired, in 1900, it was in the possession of a surplus sufficient to maintain him and his in the years of then decline.

Mr. Holtz was born in Mecklinburg-Schwerin, September 14, 1837, and was a son of Frederick Holtz, a farmer, who left Germany early in the fifties and settled his family in West Virginia. He remained in that State till death in 1875 and is buried in Wood County. His wife was Christina Kruger who died in the same county ten years before her husband. Their children were: Lewis, of Parkersburg, West Virginia; John C; Sophia, wife of William Karnhoff, of Covington, Kentucky, and "Stina," wife of John Moseman, of Parkersburg, West Virginia.

John C. Holtz was a lad of sixteen when he left the Old World and became a Virginia youth. The vessel which brought him was a sailer out of Hamburg, bound to New York. His opportunities were meager for


educational equipment, but he managed to secure the rudiments or first principles, and was about embarking in an undertaking when the Civil war came on. He enlisted in Company C, West Virginia cavalry, first regiment, Col. Capehard. His regiment was a part of General Sheridan's command and the Rebels were right handy when they were wanted. In all the important field service of West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania Mr. Holtz took part. He was captured at Winchester, Virginia, but escaped from the Rebel field prison in fourteen days and rejoined his regiment. Mr. Holtz witnessed some of the closing scenes of the war and was near the Capitol when Lee surrendered. He was discharged in June, 1865, having served in all the four years of the Civil war.

Almost upon his release from the army Mr. Holtz came to Kansas. He gathered together a small amount of cash and, upon his arrival at Lawrence he purchased a forty acre tract of timber of a Delaware Indian and proceeded to get out ties for the Union Pacific railroad, then building. He spent the first winter around Lawrence at this work, boarding with the Indians, and when spring came he went south into Franklin County and bought a farm eight miles east of Ottawa. He returned to Lawrence in the spring of 1867 and was married to Margaret Lewis, a daughter of James Lewis, from Ohio, who settled at Cherokee, Kansas.

In 1869 Mr. Holtz moved over into Coffey County, near Burlington, and there carried on his farming and stock raising till 1884, as previously explained. With the aid of his sons in operating his large farm and with his own expert management Mr. Holtz's prosperity, as an agriculturist, has been positive and enduring. His sons are: Lewis, of Allen County, is married to Mary Dice; James, of Woodson County; Frank, of Woodson County, and John, of Iola.

In politics Mr. Holtz is a Republican. His first Presidential vote was for Lincoln in 1864, and he has voted for every Republican candidate since.

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