Page 751-752, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


Joseph King, of Plum Grove township, is one of the most extensive farmers and stockmen of Butler county. He belongs to that type of men who have built up a reputation for Butler county, as one of the prosperous and progressive counties of the great State of Kansas. He came to Butler county in the spring of 1886, with approximately $2,500 in cash, which he invested in a quarter section of land, and stocked it with a few head of cattle. He went in debt considerably, and met with more or less adversity, during the first year or two in Butler county; and in 1888, two years after coming here, he was $1,500 worse off than nothing. However, he was not discouraged, but continued to buy land. In 1889, he raised a good crop, but cattle and grain scarcely brought any price. Cows were worth only $15 a head, and two-year-old steers sold for $12 per head; and during that year he raised 14,000 bushels of corn. He has paid as high as eighteen per cent. interest on money which he borrowed. He now owns 2,400 acres of some of Butler county's best land, and his home is on the first quarter section that he purchased in Plum Grove township.

Joseph King was born in Springfield, Ohio, April 4, 1854, and is a son of William and Nancy (Hatfield) King, natives of Ohio and both descendants of old American families. The father was a school teacher in early life. In 1854, the King family removed to Tazewell county, Illinois, where the father engaged in farming and teaching school, and the parents spent their lives there. In his youth, Mr. King's opportunities to obtain an education were limited. However, he succeeded in picking up the rudiments of an English education, but most of his time was devoted to the farm and stock.

Mr. King was married, April 1, 1879, to Miss Mary Roberts, a native of Missouri, who was reared and educated in Illinois. She is a daughter of Ellis and Nancy Jane (Musick) Roberts. To Mr. and Mrs. King have been born the following children: Clarence, Merton, Melvin, and Paul, all of whom are associated with their father on the ranch


where they have all worked in harmony to one common end, which, no doubt, is one of the strong elements of success which has crowned their efforts. The King ranch is famous for its high grade horses and cattle. They usually have a large herd of shorthorn cattle and a great many Percheron horses are raised here.

When Mr. King was forty-two years old, he became affiliated with the Christian Church of Potwin. He is a man of deep, religious conviction and carries his Christianity into his daily life. He is a liberal supporter of the church. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Masons, Knights of Pythias, Royal Neighbors, Modern Woodmen of America, Rebekahs and politically is a Republican, although inclined to be independent.

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