Chase County Leader, Friday, Feb. 5, 1909, Pg 1




Another of Chase County’s Early Settlers Answers the Last Roll

Call—A Good Man Gone.


   A. B. Watson died at his home in this city Thursday afternoon at 5:30 o’clock.  He had been ill for several weeks but the greater part of that time had been able to be up around the house.

  Mr. and Mrs. Watson settled here in July, 1859, and were among the very earliest settlers of Chase county and many will be grieved to learn of the death.  At the time they came here there were but two houses on the present townsite, one where Dr. Johnson now lives, which was occupied by the Watsons, and one back of where the Union Hotel now stands.

  A. B. Watson was born in Ripley county, Ind., February 28, 1833 and died in Cottonwood Falls, Kans., Feb. 4, 1909, being nearly 76 years old at the time of his death.  He was married to Sarah Jane Williams in Davis county, Iowa, in 1857.  At the beginning of the Civil War he answered his country’s call and enlisted in the Eighth Kansas Cavalry and a short time later was transferred to Company B, Ninth Kansas Cavalry, in which company he served three years.  He was a prominent member of the G. A. R. Post here.

  Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Watson:  Harry, who died March 22, 1872; and infant, who died February 3, 1875; William Roy, who died March 17, 1889; Mrs. Cora L. Clark of Syracuse, Kans.; Charles T. Watson of Reno, Nevada and Mrs. Nellie Clark of Coolidge, Kans.  Besides his, aged wife and children he leaves to mourn his death two brothers, Wm. Watson of Ft. Madison, Iowa, and Hartsel Watson of Oklahoma City, Ok., two sisters Mrs. L. Noble of Chicago, Ill., and Mrs. Yarnell of Mt. Vernon, Wash., seventeen grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

  The funeral will be held Sunday morning at eleven o’clock at the home.


Chase County Leader, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 1908, Pg. 2

Vol. XXXVIII, No. 101


Tribute to Aaron B. Watson.



In the year 1859, I formed the acquaintance of Aaron B. Watson, he had moved from Iowa and settled in the then small hamlet of Cottonwood Falls.  Here the few scattered settlers met occasionally and became acquainted.  They were honest and patriotic men and women determined to build a home for themselves and their posterity.  The trials of frontier life were hard and severe; their faith in being successful was almost unlimited, many were successful, a few failed.  Among the many who believed in the great future of Kansas was Aaron Watson.  Always hopeful, jovial and friendly with everyone who knew him.

  In the early part of December, 1861, Comrade Watson, Williams and the writer enlisted in the 8th Kansas Infantry, Governor Martin’s Regiment, serving in that Regiment for some time when we were transferred to the 9th K. V. C., where the term of enlistment was completed.  Comrade Watson did not remain long in the list of privates, his soldierly bearing and aptitude in acquiring and mastering the tactics of those days placed him in non commissioned officers rank.  He was a good disiplinarian, ever ready to obey the commands of his superior officers, always giving the greatest latitude permissible under the rules to those below him.

  During the dark and doubtful days of the war he was always hopeful of the final success of the union cause.  He was a splendid type of the American volunteers of 1861, tall, erect, quick of movement, prompt in obedience to all official commands.  There are a few of those boys who enlisted in the 8th Kansas from Chase County still numbered among the living.  They are answering the final roll call, the call that all mankind must obey.

  The volunteers of 1861 to 1865 performed their whole duty as citizens and patriots; they preserved a nation whose freedom and liberty was and is the admiration of the oppressed the world over.  They have bequeathed to another generation the priceless gift of human liberty.  Will they prove worthy of the trust?  We hope so.

  Comrade Aaron, you have gone on before us; you will be absent but not forgotten; your kind greeting and friendship of half a century will not be forgotten while life lasts.

                                                                                   P. B. McCabe.