Allison, Nathaniel Thompson. History of Cherokee County, Kansas, and Representative Citizens. Chicago, IL: Biographical Publishing Co., 1904. Online index created by Carolyn Ward, instructor at USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, and State Coordinator for The KSGenWeb Project.

Thomas Kutz

THOMAS KUTZ, who is one of the best known of the pioneer farmers of Cherokee County, is located in section 11, township 32, range 22, in Sheridan township. He was born in Berks County, Pennsylvania, February 3, 1837, and is a son of John and Mary (Fry) Kutz. The parents of our subject were both born and lived throughout their entire lives in Berks County, Pennsylvania. They became parents of 11 children, as follows: Margaret, deceased; Elizabeth, of Berks County, Pennsylvania; George, a blacksmith, of Berks County; Thomas; Mary, Hannah and Frank, of Berks County; Nelson, of Stark County, Ohio; Rachel of Reading, Berks County; Charles, deceased; and John of Berks County. In politics, Mr. Kutz was first a Whig and afterward a Republican. Religiously, he and his wife were members of the Lutheran Church.

Thomas Kutz attended the public schools and lied on the home farm until he was 19 years old. Having learned the blacksmith trade in Pennsylvania, he went to Stark County, Ohio, and followed it there for two years, then moved to Cedar County, Iowa. There he followed his trade and farmed four years, after which he went to Linn County, Iowa, and was married in 1862. He remained there and in Cedar County, Iowa, two years, and then removed to Nemeha County, Kansas. Leaving his wife with her people, he went to Silver Bow City and Virginia City, Montana, where he worked in the mines. He went with a large wagon train, driving an ox-team for Allen Green Campbell, the trip consuming 108 days. Upon his return from Montana, he took up 80 acres of land in Cloud County, Kansas, which he greatly improved and of which he planted 30 acres to corn. There were just eight families in the settlement and they had considerable trouble with the Indians who warned them to leave the country. They killed a Mr. Morgan and his two children, and captured Mrs. Morgan. Many are the exciting and interesting stories which could be told by Mr. Kutz and his wife concerning these early days on the Western plains. Our subject, accompanied by his wife, her parents and brother spent five weeks roaming over the prairie in search of a new home. Several of the party were taken sick when they were along Deer Creek in Cherokee County, and here they camped. They all took up claims here, Mr. Kutz buying the 160-acre tract, where he now lives, in July, 1866. He built a temporary shack, 14 feet square, with no floor and a slab door, and then set about making a home. The party brought 52 head of cattle and seven horses with them. He has lived on this place ever since and has met with success, raising grain of all kinds and cattle, horses and hogs. He is well known over the county and well likes.

On February 13, 1862, Mr. Kutz was married to Mary C. Betzer, who was born in Vermilion County, Indiana, and is a daughter of Aaron and Esther (Ricketts) Betzer, her father a native of Ohio and her mother, of Indiana. Mr. Betzer was a farmer by occupation anddied September 16, 1889. He and his good wife had seven children as follows: Anthony, deceased; Mary C., wife of our subject; Salisba, who lives in Missouri; Isabelle, who resides in Galena; Julia Ann, wife of William Rohrbough; Isaac Wilson, of Oklahoma, and Josephine, deceased. Our subject and his wife have four children: Lovah E., who married John Pike of Columbus, Kansas, and has two children,—Fay and Floyd; Francis, of Sheridan township, who married Abbie Peters; Rosie E.; and Daisy E., who married Wayne Sergeant and has two children, Ruth Pauline and Olive Loretta. Religiously, they are members of the U. B. Church at West Mineral. Mr. Kutz cast his first vote for Lincoln, and now casts his vote for the man best qualified for the office.

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