Pages 538-540, 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.




RANDOLPH W. SEE was born March 6, 1842, in Hardy county, Virginia, now a part of West Virginia, and is a son of John See, who was born in the Old Dominion about 1788, and died in 1854. The father received a good education and for many years taught school during the winter months. Occasionally his son Randolph would accompany him to the district in which he was teaching and there would pursue his education. During the summer months the father engaged in farming and followed the cooper's trade, which he had learned during his boyhood. He owned about three hundred acres of farm land in Lost River Valley, Virginia. In


his political affiliations he was a Whig. Twice married, by his first union he had the following children: Craigen; Michael H.; Amanda, who became the wife of Abner McWilliams and died in Illinois about 1875, while her husband survived until 1885; and Mrs. Dolly Neff, who removed to Champaign county, Illinois. For his second wife John See chose Catherine Stalnaker, who was born in Virginia about 1800, her father being a native of Randolph county, that State. Her death occurred in 1884. Her children were Andrew S., of Hartsville, Missouri; Keziah, who became the wife of William Sturm, and died in Douglas county, Illinois, about 1863; Thomas, who died in the same county about 1864; and R. W., of this review.

The father of this family died in 1854 when Randolph W. See was twelve years of age. In 1855 the family removed to Illinois, and the eldest son was soon married there. Our subject then began earning his own livelihood, working for James H. Shawhan, a prominent farmer of Douglas county, Illinois, and afterward for William Murphy. He was employed as a farm hand by the month until he entered the Union army on the 21st of July, 1862, joining Company H, Twenty-fifth Illinois infantry, under Colonel Kohler, while Lieutenant Buckner acted as captain. The regiment rendezvoused at St. Louis and thence went to Jefferson City, Sedalia and Springfield, going into winter quarters at Rolla, Mo. In the spring of 1863 they advanced on Price at Springfield, then went to Arkansas below Bentonville, participating in the three days' fight at Pea Ridge on the 6th, 7th and 8th of March. He was wounded in the side and had his right leg shattered by a musket ball, after which he was taken to Cassville, where he remained in the hospital until July. He was then removed to Springfield, and later to Rolla, and in the fall was sent to St. Louis, where on account of the wounds sustained at Pea Ridge, he was honorably discharged September 19, 1863, having served for fourteen months.

Mr. See then returned to Illinois, and for some time continued in the employ of Mr. Murphy. He afterward rented land and began farming on his own account; his mother acting as his housekeeper until his marriage, which occurred August 10, 1865, Miss Martha Osborn, daughter of Levi Osborn, becoming his wife. Her mother bore the maiden name of Mary Parker, and was born in Fayette county, Ohio, October 29, 1815, her death occurring October 16, 1856. Mr. Osborn survived her and passed away in March, 1875, at the age of sixty-three, having been born in Ohio, January 11, 1812. Mrs. See was born in Douglas county, Illinois, July 5, 1848, and by her marriage has become the mother of four children, all of whom are living: Mary H., wife of D. P. Neher, who resides near McCune, Crawford county Kansas; A. L., who is engaged in sheep raising at North Yakima, Washington, Frank E., an engineer in the employ of the Portland Cement Company at Iola, and Hattie L., wife of F. P. Tanner, of Iola.

Mr. and Mrs. See left Illinois in the fall of 1867, and came direct to Allen county, where he secured a homestead claim of eighty acres on section 26, Iola township. For thirty-one years he devoted his energies to


the cultivation and further improvement of his property, and transformed the wild tract of land into a very valuable farm, which yielded to him an excellent return for the care and labor which he bestowed upon it. Thus he acquired a handsome competency, which now enables him to live retired, and in 1898 he removed to Iola, taking up his abode at No. 712 North Jefferson avenue, where he is now enjoying a well-earned rest, surrounded by many of the comforts which go to make life worth the living.

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