Pages 223-225, 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.


James L. Hosley


JAMES L. HOSLEY—The beautiful home of James L. Hosley is located in Anderson County, but much of his land lies in Allen County. His possessions are a monument to his enterprise, unflagging industry and capable business management. He owns twelve hundred and thirty-five acres of fine land in the two counties, but at the time of his marriage he did not possess a dollar. His life history so clearly illustrates the possibilities that lie before men of determined purpose who are not afraid to work that it should serve as a source of inspiration and aid to all who are forced to start upon a business career empty-handed.

James L. Hosley was born in Barry County, Michigan, on the 13th of


November, 1843. His father, Jonathan Hosley, was a native of Massachusetts and at an early period in the development of the Wolverine State emigrated westward, taking up his residence there. He was united in marriage to Miss Lima F. Fisher, and upon a farm in Michigan they resided until 1859, when they came to Kansas and settled in Osage township, Allen County. The father died here in 1878 and the mother, surviving him for many years, passed away in 1894. Of their six children, four are yet living and are residents of Kansas.

James L. Hosley, the third in order of birth, pursued his education in the common schools of Michigan. When a youth of sixteen years he came with his parents to the Sunflower State and assisted his father in the operation of the home farm until after the inauguration of the Civil war. His patriotic spirit was aroused by the attempt of the South to overthrow the Union, and donning the blue he joined Company E, of the Sixth Kansas Cavalry on the 5th of December, 1861. He served throughout the remainder of the war, participating in many battles and skirmishes. Among them were those of Clear Creek, Coon Creek, Ft. Gibson, Lindsay's Prairie, Prairie Grove, Cane Hill, Maysville, Newtonia, Waldon and Mazard Prairie. All those battles occurred in Arkansas and were most hotly contested. Mr. Hosley was captured at the last named on the 27th of July 1864 and was exchanged on the 22nd of May, 1865, after being held as prisoner of war for ten months. He will never forget the first day, which was one of the saddest of his life, nor the day of his release, which brought great happiness, for his experience as a Rebel captive was anything but pleasant. He was sent to Tyler, Texas, and there remained until the close of hostilities. During the entire period he had to sleep upon the ground and his rations were limited. He would much have preferred to take his chance with his comrades upon the field, facing the enemy in battle, rather than remain in inactivity in the far South, enduring treatment that was, to say the least, not enviable. For days he had nothing but a pint of meal in which the cob of the corn was also ground. Upon being exchanged he was sent to Duvall's Bluff, Arkansas, where he received an honorable discharge on the 21st of June, 1865. Although in a number of important engagements he was never wounded. With a most creditable military record he returned to his home, conscious of having faithfully performed his duty as a defender of the old flag.

On again reaching Kansas Mr. Hosley began farming and dealing in stock on a small scale. He completed his preparations for a home by his marriage to Miss Emeline West, a native of Ohio, who came with her parents to this State in 1858. The wedding was celebrated in 1868, and the lady has ever proved to her husband a faithful companion and helpmate. At the time of their marriage Mr. and Mrs Hosley had only money enough to buy a package of soda, which cost fifteen cents, but they began work with a will and the fruits of their labor are seen in the extensive landed possessions which now constitute the Hosley estate. As his financial resources have increased Mr. Hosley has continually added to his property until now he has twelve hundred and thirty-five acres of rich.


productive land in Allen and Anderson counties. He has this well stocked with horses and cattle, keeping about one hundred and fifty head of cattle and a large number of horses. He has only good grades of stock and therefore has no trouble in securing a ready sale on the market. His residence is just across the line in Anderson County. It is a beautiful structure, and its tasteful furnishings and attractive exterior make it one of the most pleasing homes in all the county. He certainly has every reason to be proud of his business record. He does not owe a dollar to any man and his possessions have been acquired entirely through his own efforts and through the assistance of his capable wife. Honesty has characterized all his dealings, and added to this has been indefatigable energy that has overcome all difficulties and obstacles in his path, enabling him to gain a plane of affluence.

In his political views Mr. Hosley is a stalwart Republican. He joined the party when he became a voter and has never wavered in his allegiance to its principles. He maintains a pleasant relationship with his old army comrades through his membership in Major Rankin Post, G. A. R., at Kincaid, and delights in recounting and recalling the scenes of life on the tented field or upon the field of battle. He possesses the true western spirit of enterprise and progress that has been such an important factor in the substantial upbuilding and development of the middle west.

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