Pages 458-459, 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.




JOHN S. WILSON, of LaHarpe, is one of the more recent settlers of Allen county and he belongs to the thrifty and industrious class of Anglo-Americans who are so numerous in Elm township. He came into Allen county in 1889 from Tazewell county, Illinois, where he had resided fifteen years and whither he went from Livingston county, New York. In


the latter state he was a neighbor of our fellow townsman, Henry Busley, and in locating in Allen county it was not strange that he should join farms with his old friend in their new home.

Mr. Wilson was born in Lincolnshire, England, November 15, 1843, and is a son of John Wilson, a laborer, who had two sons and three daughters, viz: Mary, deceased, wife of William Wakefield; Robert Wilson, who is in Australia; Elizabeth, who is married to William Graham and resides in England; John S. Wilson, and Jane, wife of John Higgins, of England.

Our subject's mother was a school teacher and her maiden name was Lizzie Simpson. She reared her family to habits of industry and to principles of honesty and gave them such intellectual training as to equip them for successful competition with the world.

At nine years of age John S. Wilson began working by the year and at the age of thirteen he was able to earn three pounds. His labors were all given to farm work and the highest wages he earned (which was the highest paid) was twenty-one pounds a year. When he left England it was with sufficient funds to pay the passage of himself, wife and a child. He became a farm hand in his new but temporary home in Livingston county, New York, and when he had layed up two hundred dollars he bought a team and began farming rented land. He had accumulated a small surplus when he came to Illinois and a little more by the time he settled in Kansas, so that when he contracted for his home place of eighty acres he was only in debt a thousand dollars. In the eleven years he has passed in Allen county he has paid off his indebtedness and is clear of incumbrance with another eighty acres added to complete his quarter section.

In 1872 Mr. Wilson was married in Lincolnshire, England, to Susan Johnson who died at LaHarpe in 1891 leaving three children, as follows: Lizzie, wife of Simon Remsburg, a prominent young farmer of Iola township; Robert W. Wilson, with his father, and Lydia Wilson, who died May 4, 1900, from accidental burning.

Mr. Wilson allied himself with the Democratic party when he became a voter in the United States and, in his quiet way, has given aid and comfort to the enemies of the opposition for many years.

His pride in his home Mr. Wilson has made manifest in his constant and permanent improvement of his premises. His farm is one of the conspicuously attractive ones on his highway and when any of the conveniences of a farm are needed he provides them.

Previous | Home | Next