Page 767-768, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


Silas Magill, a Butler county pioneer and prosperous farmer and stockman of Bruno township, is a native of Pennsylvania, born January 16, 1841. He is a son of Charles and Sarah (Courson) Magill, the former a native of Pennsylvania, of Irish descent, and the latter of German descent, and a native of Pennsylvania. Charles Magill was born in Venango county, Pennsylvania, January 6, 1806, and died in Illinois, October 21, 1888. In the early days Charles Magill was engaged in the lumber business in Pennsylvania and followed that vocation for thirty years. At that time it was the custom of lumbermen to raft their lumber down the Alleghany and Ohio rivers to market at Pittsburg or Cincinnati. Charles Magill was a son of Arthur Magill, a native of Belfast, Ireland, who immigrated to America when a young man. Charles Magill was a deeply religious man and a member of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Silas Magill was one of a family of eleven children. He grew to manhood in Pennsylvania, and was educated in the public schools. On April 2, 1868, he was united in marriage with Miss Olive Morrison, a native of Pennsylvania, and a daughter of G. W. and Mary Ann (Jacobs) Morrison. The mother, Mary Jacobs, was a native of Pennsylvania, and of German descent. Mrs. Magill was born November 6, 1848, and was one of a family of two children born to her parents.

To Silas Magill and wife have been born the following children: George, Vaughn, N. M.: Charles M., deceased; W. E., Eads, Colo.; Arthur, at home; J. V., Canton, Ohio; Clyde, Clearwater, Kans., and Ollie O., at home.

A few days after their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Magill left their Pennsylvania home and went to Illinois, where he rented land from his father, remaining there until 1871. They then came to Kansas, at first going to Neosho Falls, and Mrs. Magill and her four months' old baby remained at a hotel there while Mr. Magill came to Butler county and filed on a claim in Bruno township. Here he pre-empted the southwest quarter of section 21, and returned to Neosho Falls for his wife and child. They came to Butler county by stage, a distance of about 100 miles. The roads were bad and the trip required two days. After coming to Butler county the family made their home temporarily with a sister of Mr. Magill's until a little cabin, 12x16 feet, was built, when they moved into it and began life on the plains of Butler county in a very humble way. Like many others of the early settlers, Mr. Magill says that


while he was getting on fairly well in the world, he would have left Butler county during the first year, but that he was too poor to get away, and that after he became financially able to go if he wished, neither he nor Mrs. Magill wanted to go. On the whole, they have prospered and made money and today are among the substantial citizens of Butler county. Their first farming in Butler county was done with a yoke of oxen, which they frequently drove to Augusta, a distance of eight miles, but now when they go to Augusta it is only a matter of a few minutes with their Overland automobile instead of an all day's drive with the oxen of the early seventies.

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