Page 775-776, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


J. C. Ferguson, a Butler county pioneer, who settled in the vicinity of Whitewater over forty-five years ago, is a native of Kentucky. He was born near Hartford, Ohio county, October 5, 1841, and is a son of John E. and Christine (Taylor) Ferguson. both also natives of Ohio county, Kentucky. John C. was the youngest of a family of six children, and he and his brother, G. W., are the only members of the family now living.

John C. Ferguson remained in his native State until 1865, when he removed to Illinois, locating in Macon county. At that time land could be bought in that part of Illinois for from $12 to $16 per acre, and Mr. Ferguson speculated some in city and suburban real estate during his res-


idence of five or six years in Decatur, Ill. In 1870 he came to Kansas and settled on eighty acres of land in Butler county, which is now occuiped[sic] by a part of the city of Whitewater. He remained there but a short time, however, when he filed on a quarter section, one mile east of the present site of Whitewater. His claim was "jumped," and for a number of years the matter was in litigation in the Butler county courts, and finally Mr. Ferguson received his land patent. He says that the litigation cost him considerably more than the land was worth at that time, but that he felt his claim to be a just one, and fought it out, regardless of costs or consequences, and won. He resided on this claim for a number of years when he sold it and bought some school land in Harvey county where he was successfully engaged in farming until 1908, when he removed to Whitewater where he has since resided, and is one of the substantial men of the community.

Mr. Ferguson was married October 22, 1879, to Miss Mattie E. Pershing, a native of Pennsylvania, and a daughter of Isaac and Sarah Pershing, also natives of Pennsylvania. The Pershing family removed from Pennsylvania to Illinois, locating in Hancock county in 1855, when Mrs. Ferguson was four years of age. In 1875 they came to Kansas, locating in Butler county. Mrs. Ferguson died September 9, 1907. She belonged to that high type of American pioneer women and lived a consistent Christian life. Mr. Ferguson is a Democrat, and is inclined to liberality and independence in his political views. Mr. Ferguson passed through the many hardships, incident to pioneer life, nearly a half century ago. When he came to Kansas, Butler county was almost in its primitive state, and when he reached here he had less than $25, but he was ready and willing to work for success, and he has succeeded. He is a man of strong will and tenacity of purpose when he believes he is right; and when he sets out to accomplish a certain thing, he is not easily pursuaded to abandon his purpose. He has been a student of men and affairs all his life, and possesses a broad field of human knowledge, gathered from the experience of a lifetime.

Previous | Main Page | Biography Index | Next

Pages 775-776,