Page 520-521, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


John T. Wells, now deceased, was one of Butler county's most substantial citizens. He is survived by his widow, Mrs. Nancy Wells, a representative of that noble type of Kansas pioneer women, and she now resides at Augusta. John T. Wells was born in Belmont county, Ohio, in 1830, and was a son of John and Mary (Milson) Wells, natives of Virginia. John T. Wells came west in early life, locating in Missouri and, on December 2, 1855, was united in marriage at Boonville, Mo., to Miss Nancy Sifers, a native of Morgan county, Ohio, born in 1833. After their marriage they lived at Boonville, Mo., until 1857, when they came to Kansas, locating at Leavenworth. About two and one-half years later they returned to Boonville and resided in that section until 1882. They then came to Butler county, Kansas, locating five miles southeast of Augusta, where they bought 320 acres of land from Stephen Lehr, for which they paid $2,500.

The place was not very well improved, and Mr. and Mrs. Wells proceded to make substantial improvements, and were successfully engaged in farming and stock raising on that place for seventeen years, and in 1899 sold it for $8,000, and removed to Augusta, where Mr.


Wells lived in retirement until his death, September 25, 1914, and his remains now rest in the Elmwood cemetery at Augusta. To Mr. and Mrs. Wells were born four children, as follows: Minnie May, died in infancy; Ida, who married Homer Freeman, died in 1899; Charles, lives in Wichita; and Mrs. Emma Bartlett, lives at Augusta.

Mrs. Wells has a vivid recollection of many early day events of the days in Kansas and Butler county when neighbors were a long distance from each other, but it seems that the scarcer neighbors were and the farther they were from each other, the more they neighbored. In those early times they took a genuine neighborly interest in each other's welfare. Perhaps, and no doubt, environments created that neighborly spirit, for the early settlers, possibly, needed the real co-operation and sympathy of one another more than people do in this day of a more perfect social organization, and with better equipped appliances and conveniences for getting along in the world with less sympathetic co-operation. At any rate, things seem to have changed and many of us, in reflecting on the past, long for the days of the old fashioned neighbor.

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