Pages 166-168, 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.


Samuel M. Knox


SAMUEL MILES KNOX was born in Juniata county, Pennsylvania, November 11, 1826. The son of a farmer, his boyhood was spent after the usual fashion of American farm boys,—working hard during the long summer and going to school in the short winter. His first money was earned at the age of ten, when for three months he built the school house fires every morning for one dollar. He has earned a good many dollars since then, but never one that gave him more satisfaction. The progress made in his studies is shown by the fact that at the age of seventeen he was employed by the school directors as assistant teacher,—at the munificent salary of four dollars a month! The spring following he entered the Tuscarora Academy, and the next fall he secured a position as teacher at a salary of $18.00 a month,—boarding himself. Determined to secure an education if possible, he continued for two years to attend the Academy in summers, paying his way there by the money saved from the meager salary paid him as a teacher during the winter. From the Academy he went into the office of a physician and for two years gave all the time he could spare from the school teaching by which he earned his living to the study of medicine. After two years of this study he gave up


the idea of becoming a physician and for three years thereafter he was engaged in the business of selling books, especially German and English History of the United States, selling more of the German than of the English edition. Through the accident of being obliged to accept grain in payment of some debts owed to him by the farmers of the neighborhood, he was drawn into the lumber and grain business, which he followed successfully for two years at Wyant a small station in Bureau county, Illinois, of which village he was the first postmaster. Abandoning his mercantile business he went to Princeton, Illinois, and began the study of law in the office of Milton T. Peters, a leading attorney of that section, and after the proper preparation was admitted to the bar. In 1860 he was made the Democratic candidate for Representative in the Legislature, but went down with his party in the election that followed. In spite of an adverse party majority he was elected county judge of his county the following year and served in that capacity four years. Soon after his retirement from this office he made an extended tour of Europe. Returning from this trip his attention was attracted to the cheap lands then being placed upon the market by the western railroads, and he bought several of the tracts that he still owns in Allen county, Kansas. Becoming acquainted through these purchases with the managers of some of the land grant railroads he was engaged for the next several years as their agent for the sale of their lands, serving with marked success in this capacity the L. L. & G., the M. K. & T, the C. B. & Q., and the Union Pacific. His longest service in this line was with the Union Pacific with which he remained as Land and Passenger Agent until 1897. Retiring from this employment he took up his permanent residence in Allen county and is now engaged on a large scale in the farming and stock business in Salem township.

This is the simple story, as briefly as it can be told, of a successful career, won without any outside help, through the sheer force of pluck, industry and character. To begin as a mere boy, to educate one's self, to win an honored place in a learned profession, to make one's force felt in great corporations, to amass a modest but sufficient fortune, and then to have sense enough, while yet hale and hearty to settle down to enjoy the fruits of his labor,—that is a record any man may be pardoned for being proud of.

Like most Americans, Judge Knox knows but little of his ancestry. His grandfather, Hugh Knox, was born in Scotland in 1758, emigrated to America, settled in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, moved to Danville, New York, then to Ashtabula county, Ohio, where he died in 1851. His father, John Knox, was born January 6, 1789, in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, and was a farmer by occupation. He served as a cavalryman in the war of 1812, and died November 25, 1858, in Princeton, Illinois. His mother, Eunice Pauling, was born November 12, 1794, in Philadelphia and died July 12, 1858, in Princeton, Illinois. She was descended from one of the Quaker families who came to America with the Penn colony. Several of Judge Knox' maternal ancestors were soldiers in the Revolutionary war, one of them, Samuel Pauling, being with Wash-


ington during the memorable winter of 1777-8 at Valley Forge, and later at the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown.

On the 31st of December, 1854, Mr. Knox was united in marriage to Miss Hannan H. Weaver, of Allentown, Pennsylvania. Unto them have been born two sons and three daughters, four yet living: Anson H., who married Annie Dewey Whipple and who is now engaged in farming near Sheffield, Illinois; Mary K., wife of Justus Massillon Stevens, of Princeton, Illinois; Ada L., who resides with her parents; Samuel F., a practicing attorney of Chicago, Illinois, who married Edith Brown, of London, England. The children have been provided with very superior educational privileges, the two daughters completing their education in the languages in Dresden and Paris.

In his political views Judge Knox has been a life-long Democrat, is strongly in favor of the double standard of currency and had the honor of being a delegate to the national silver convention in 1896, which nominated William J. Bryan for president of the United States. He is a gentleman of broad general information, liberal in his views, and acts upon his convictions. He is one of the most public spirited and enterprising citizens of Allen county. In 1856 he became a member of the Masonic fraternity and has taken all the degrees in blue lodge, chapter, council, commandery and Scottish rite branches of Free Masonry and held office in all the bodies. In his life, however, he exemplifies the spirit of mutual helpfulness and forbearance which forms the basic element of the craft. His has been an honorable career. He has never made engagements that he has not fulfilled nor incurred obligations he has not met. He is at all times straightforward and reliable and stands as a representative of our highest type of American manhood.

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