Pages 298-299, 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 M. WALLACE, one of the highly respected citizens of Humboldt, was born in Springfield, Illinois, January 17, 1829. His father, John Wallace, was born in Georgetown, South Carolina, August 3, 1800,


and moved with his parents to Illinois when but twelve years old. He was a wagon-maker by trade and followed that business in Illinois for many years. Upon reaching manhood's estate he was married to Miss Minerva Myers, a native of Davis County, Kentucky.

The schools of those days were of little consequence and the only education it was possible for a child to get was from the schools which were conducted by teachers who received their pay from the scholars who attended. These schools Mr. Wallace attended and received such meager instruction as they afforded. When sixteen years of age he was apprenticed to a carpenter and served with him for four years. Two years of this time he worked for his board and clothes and two months schooling each year. The early love for the carpenter's trade has never left him and although most of his life has been spent on a farm he has always worked more or less at the trade he learned in those early days.

October 19, 1849 he was married to Miss Mary Garver, a native of Pennsylvania, and to them has been born eight children. Seven of these children still survive: John J., David C., Emma A. Zigler, of Emporia; Charles S.; William C.; James A. and Mary C., all scattered about over Colorado, Illinois, Missouri and Kansas.

Mr. Wallace was living in Illinois when the war came on and although he had a large family he answered the call for troops, enlisting August 2, 1862, in Company C, 116th Illinois volunteers. He was elected a lieutenant of his company and after a month's drill his regiment was sent to the front. They landed at Memphis, Tennessee, and were soon sent south to re-enforce troops that had previously been sent down into Mississippi. Mr. Wallace was taken sick on the march and he was sent to the hospital. Here he lay for a long time and when he had recovered sufficiently to travel he was sent back to Decatur with health shattered. Here he was given detached duty, enforcing the draft, arresting deserters and the like. This work continued until the close of the war and in 1865 he was mustered out. The year 1867 he came to Kansas to look up a location and finally located in Humboldt. He bought a farm five miles west of that city and returned to Illinois and brought his family out to their new home. In this vicinity he has lived until the present time. He improved that farm, which was a wilderness when he came here, until it is one of the best in the county. His life has been filled with hard work and in 1896 he moved to Humboldt, determined upon a partial rest. His activity for the good of the city soon brought him in contact with municipal affairs and he was elected Police Judge. He is now mayor of the city.

Politically he has always been an ardent Republican and for many years was an active worker in the ranks of that party. He is a member of the Masonic order.

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