Transcribed from History of Labette County, Kansas and its Representative Citizens, ed. & comp. by Hon. Nelson Case. Pub. by Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago, Ill. 1901

Return to table of contents | Return to Index | Return to Biography Index M

J. W. Morain

J. W. MORAIN, a highly respected farmer living, in section 29, township 32, range 18, in Mound Valley township, Labette county, Kansas, was born in Pickaway county, Ohio, in 1836. He is a son of Joseph and Mary (Murphy) Morain.

Joseph Morain went with his parents from Maryland to Ohio, where he lived for a number of years. When J. W. was but one year old, Mr. Morain moved to Douglas county, Illinois, where, eight years later, his death occurred. His wife then returned to Ohio, and subsequently went back to Illinois, where she died, in March, 1892. They reared five children: J. W.; and James, Minerva, Sarah and Thomas, deceased.

J. W. Morain lived nine years in Illinois, and then returned with his mother to Ohio. When he reached the age of twenty-one years, he went back to Illinois. In 1868, he went to Missouri. In 1871, Mr. Morain drove from Jasper county, Missouri, to Labette county, Kansas, and in July of that year set the stakes on his present farm in Mound Valley township. This farm had been abandoned by a young man, who had placed four logs there, as a foundation for a house. Not a particle of the land was broken, and there was no timber on it. In the fall of 1871, Mr. Morain built a claim house, 10 by 12 feet, in size. He was alone on the claim at this time, and one of his horses got away. Mr. Morain went back to Missouri, on foot, and tried to find the animal. He was unsuccessful, and returned to Labette county, with a friend. Later, he traded the remaining horse for a yoke of cattle. He returned to Missouri during the winter of 1871-1872, and the following spring took his family, and once more settled on this farm. His claim house still stands, but in 1884 Mr. Morain completed an eight-room house, which is 24 feet square. He has 500 apple trees and two miles of hedge. He carries on diversified farming, and is very successful. Mr. Morain favors Hereford cattle, and Poland-China hogs. He has made many valuable improvements on his farm, and it presents a very attractive appearance.

Mr. Morain was united in marriage with Hannah Barnes, in De Witt county, Illinois, March 26, 1861. She was born in Marion county, Illinois, where her father was engaged in manufacturing woolens. Mrs. Morain has a half brother living in Illinois, and a half sister, who lives in Linn county, Kansas. Nine children have resulted from her union with Mr. Morain, namely: Charles, who was born in Illinois, married Emma Allmon, and lives near his father's home; Eva, who died in Illinois; Emma, who was a native of Illinois; Albert, deceased; Stanley, who lives in Labette county, and married Miss Britegham; Ora, deceased; Charity, deceased: Leland, who lives in Iowa; Azalia, who is married, lives at home, and has one child, Leila R.; and Floyd, who is also at home.

Mr. Morain has always been a member of the Republican party, and has taken an active interest in local politics. He served as clerk of the school board, in District No. 34, in 1874, and was township treasurer for two years. He attends the Methodist church at Excelsior, where he acts as church trustee. Mr. Morain is a man of honest principles, and is highly esteemed by all who know him. Portraits of Mr. and Mrs. Morain accompany this sketch, being shown on a preceding page.