Pages 760-762, 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.




THOMAS W. PLUMMER, whose business activities have largely connected him with the substantial improvement and upbuilding of the west, has for sixteen years engaged in handling real estate in Yates Center and is one of the well known and reliable business men of the city. He is a native of Lincolnshire, England, born July 8, 1839, but since early youth has been a resident of this republic. His father, John B. Plummer, was also a native of the "Merrie Isle" and there married Mary E. Wilkinson. He was a farmer by occupation and in 1846 he came with his family to the United States, locating in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.


where he resided until 1859, when he went to Prairie du Chien, that state, there spending his remaining days, his death occurring in 1890, when he had reached the ripe age of four score years. In his family were sixteen children, nine of whom are yet living: Emma, now Mrs. Shipman, a widow, of New York city; Thomas W., of this review; John W., who resides in Wilmington, North Carolina; Mary, wife of Dr. Stiger, of Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin; Ellen, wfe[sic] of George M. Rising, of Minneapolis, Mnnesota;[sic] Edward, of Augusta, Wisconsin; Harry W., of San Francisco, California, and Sarah W., wife of M. J. Scanlon, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and John W. Plummer, of Wilmington, North Carolina.

Thomas W. Plummer was but seven years of age when he bade adieu to the land of his birth and came with his parents to the new world, he pursued a common school education in Wisconsin and at the age of seventeen years left the parental home, going into the pineries where he was engaged in cutting, sawing and hauling logs for two years. On the expiration of that period he went to Grand Raven, Michigan, and worked on the construction of the Milwaukee & Grand Haven Railroad for two years, acting as time-keeper and book-keeper for tthe[sic] contractor. In the meantime his parents had removed to Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, and he there joined them, being at that place at the time of the inauguration of the Civil war. He had watched with interest the disturbance in the South and the growth of the spirit of rebellion and resolved that if an attempt at secession was made he would strike a blow for the defense of the Union. Accordingly, in April, 1861, he enlisted in Company C, Sixth Wisconsin infantry, under Colonel Lysander Cutler, and was mustered into service at Madison, Wisconsin, on the 16th of July, the regiment being attached to the Army of the Potomac at Washington, where he remained until the spring of 1862, with McClellan's forces. He then went South with General McDowell's army and was in the engagements at Slaughter Mine and Gainesville, was also in the second battle of Bull Run, South Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Fitzhugh Crossing, Chancellorsville, Mine Run and the Wilderness, after which his company went up the James river to Petersburg. Mr. Plummer was commissioned second lieutenant at Arlington Heights was made first lieutenant and was promoted captain on the Potomac river just before the engagement at Chancellorsville, while in 1864 he was breveted major and commanded his regiment a part of the time.

Major Plummer left the army on the 16th day of July, 1864, and returned to Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, where he engaged in the stock business for some time. His residence in that city covered altogther an aggregate of fourteen years. On leaving there he entered the service of the Union Pacific Railroad Company, then constructing its line, being employed as bridge foreman. He followed the line out to Ogden, Utah, and then returned to do bridge work, in the capacity of


foreman, on the St. Paul & Duluth Railroad, being thus engaged for more than a year. He next went to the Red River of the North and for a time followed the business of trading with the Indians, after which, he came to Kansas, locating in Woodson County, where he carried on farming until 1876. That year witnessed his removal to Texas and locating near Dallas, he furnished wood and ties, under contract to the T. & P. R. R. Co. and Cotton Belt Railroad Company. In 1881 he returned to Woodson County, where he again engaged in farming for two years and then sold his land and took up his abode in Yates Center, where for sixteen years he has conducted real estate transactions, handling some valuable property. He has a comprehensive knowledge of realty values and of favorable locations, and is thus competent to advise his clients to their best advantage.

Major Plummer was married in Woodson County in December, 1878, to Miss Mary F. Hamilton, daughter of Alexander Hamilton, and their children are Bernard W., Mary Lenore and Claire S. The Major was reared in the Democratic faith, cast his first presidential vote for Stephen A. Douglas and was a Democrat until 1901. Socially he is identified with the Order of Red Men and with the Grand Army of the Republic, and as a citizen he is as loyal to his country and her best interests as when the tocsin of war sounded and he went to the front as one of the boys in blue, to return with the rank of major as the recognition of three year's faithful and loyal service.

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