WILLIAM CHESNUT                           

The Osawatomie Graphic, Thursday, Aug. 17, 1922

Died:  Aug. 12, 1922




Pioneer Merchant of Osawatomie

Died Aug. 12th at Parker, Kans.



  Wm. Chestnut, one of the Osawatomie pioneer business men and a resident of Parker for the last twenty-five years, died at his home last Saturday evening, August 12th.

  He had not been in good health for several years but was feeling as well as usual Saturday and in the evening went with his wife to call on a neighbor where he died very suddenly.

  Wm. Chestnut was born in Connecticut in 1844 and came with his parents, two brothers and four sisters, to Osawatomie in the fall of 1854.  He was here through all the border troubles and was familiar with the history of Osawatomie and vicinity during the days of John Brown.  He received his education here and one of the reminders of his school days is an old desk in the John Brown cabin that Rev. S. L. Adair made for his son Charles and Will to use in the school room instead of having to use the big flat table as the other scholars were having to do.  He left school in the spring of 1862 and entered the service, joining the Second Kansas Cavalry at Shawnee.  He served his country well and after three years and two months of service to his country he was mustered out at Leavenworth in 1865.  At this time he like other young men, had the gold fever and after a short visit at home left for Montana and remained in the west until 1874.  He then came back and went into the mercantile business with his brother, J. C., in the building where the Coker store is at present.  He was always so friendly and obliging and so many of the old timers say how they use to like to trade with him.  In 1878, he was married to Miss Flora Gale and at that time he built the house where A. J. Fields now lives, for their home and where his son, Charles, now residing in Hollywood, California, was born.  Mrs. Chestnut died in 1910.

  He was in the mercantile business here until 1887, when the brothers dissolved partnership, J. C. retiring and Will going to Parker and opening up a store where he continued business until about fifteen years ago.  He was president of the Parker State Bank for a number of years. 

  About ten years ago he was married to Miss Hettie Thompson, of Parker, who still survives him.

  Only those who knew Will Chestnut personally could measure the strength and excellence of his character.  He was a man among men, a prince of gentlemen whose courage and charity commanded the affection of all men and women who knew him.  The  city of Parker and vicinity will miss him for he was very much interested in all civic improvements and any thing for the upbuilding of the community.

  Besides his widow and son, Charlie, two brothers and one sister survive:  Tom and Mary of Denver; and John C., who is in London expecting to sail for home September 6th.

  The funeral services were held at the home in Parker Tuesday afternoon.  The remains were taken to Kansas City Wednesday morning where it will be cremated, according to his request.