Some of the Norton County Pioneers  M - Z



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The following short biographies of old settlers are of those whom we did not interview, some of whom have gone across the Great Divide. Those whom we were able to see are mentioned in another section of this issue. The data may not be correct, but is as nearly so as it is possible to get it.
These people have helped to make Norton county; they have paved the way for the great prosperity that we enjoy today.
To those whose names appear this way, we wish that we might have written your biography more fully, you have helped, for you came when it took strong men to brave the dangers of the almost wilderness.
Norton county still remembers you, whether you have stayed with us or not, and wished you peace, prosperity and happiness. some we have not been able to mention for you left no trail and we could not find you.
Good luck to you, Old Timer, you will never be forgotten, and a grateful people in the best county in the best state in the Union remembers that you helped to make it so. (page 50)

McLaren, Uncle Dan, was the first white settler in Norton county. He settled on the Solomon in 1870. He died some years ago. (page 57)

Madden, John F., was born in Hampshire county, Va. in 1845. He came to Norton county in 1873 and was township trustee for several terms, was a stone mason by trade, and he still lives just northwest of Norton. (page 56)

Marsh, Ben J., was born in Butternut county, N.Y. in 1862. Came here in 1885 and went into the photography business, and he was at one time leader of the Norton cornet band, succeeding Dr. Turner. He is now in Fon Du Lac [sic], Wis. (page 56)

Means, Samuel, was born in 1834, in West Moreland [sic] county, Penn. and came to this county in 1879 and located at Port Landis. He ran a store at Edmond and in 1889 bought out Davis Bros. Hardware store at Norton and ran this until 1881 when he sold out to H.J. Milz. He was last heard from in Perry, Oklahoma. (page 56,57)

Mittan, James Henry, was born in Lee county, Ill. in 1852. Homesteaded in Norton county in 1873. He was deputy sheriff under C.W. Posson and still lives in this county. (page 57)

Moulton, George, came to Norton county in 1885 and opened up a drug store which he ran during his stay in this county. Mr. Moulton was the first manager of the Auditorium. He now lives in Portland, Oregon. (page 57)

Neville, Joseph L., came to Norton county in 1876 from Iowa, and settled on the Solomon west of Edmond, where he lived until a couple of years ago when he retired from the farm and moved to Norton to make his home with his daughter, Minnie, who is now Mrs. Harold Neville, wife of the Rock Island agent at Norton. (page 57)

Oliver, Henry, was born in England in 1834. He is a veteran of the Civil War. He came to the county at an early date and was justice of the peace at one time. He built the first wagon shop in the county. He still lives in Norton. (page 57)

Peterson, E. V., was born in Lodi county, N.Y. in 1835; was a veteran of the Civil War and came to this county in 1885 and organized the State Bank of Norton, holding the position of cashier. He was also president of the bank for some time. He was mayor of Norton in 1886. He died some years ago in Norton. (page 57)

Posson, Charles William, was born in 1846. He came to Racine, Wis. with his parents and from there to Rock county in 1861. He was a veteran of the Civil War and came to Norton county in 1873. He was elected sheriff in 1875. He started the Commercial hotel in 1876 in a log house; he also started the first livery barn in the county. He was a kindly generous man whom all right thinking people liked. He died several years ago. (page 57)

Pratt, Louis K., was born in Madison county, Ohio in 1852. He came to Norton county in 1877. He was an attorney and was elected district judge in 1885. Last heard from in Denver. (page 57)

Rowley, Reuben, was born in Crawford county, Penna. in 1836; was a veteran of the Civil War and came to this county in 1878 and homesteaded two miles northwest of Norton. He still lives on the old homestead. Mr. Rowley is the only living charter member of the Odd Fellow lodge 157 of Norton. (page 57)

Seymore, Rollen A., came here in 1874. He was an ordained minister but in 1878 he opened a general store and shortly afterwards opened the old Seymore House, where Bowers Tavern now stands. Mr. Seymore died in Ashton, Kansas, in April 1894. (page 57)

Sheley, Granville, came here from Powshiek county, Iowa, and settled in Aldine township in 1878. He served as probate judge here for two terms and made an excellent official. He was also a writer of some note, especially in poetry, he was also a veteran of the Civil Warn. Mr. Sheley passed away at his home in this city in 1915. (page 57)

Sheley, Lisbon, came to Norton county in 1879, where he homesteaded and still lives on the farm. (page 57)

Sheley, Mose, came to Norton county from Powshiek county, Iowa in 1878. He held several township offices. He now lives northeast of Norton. (page 57)

Shepherd, Jerome, came to the county in 1873 and taught the first term of school in Almena township. He was county commissioner one term and was at one time editor of the Almena Plaindealer. He went to Iowa in 1890. (page 57)

Shook, George W., was born in 1862 at Davenport, Iowa. He came to this county in1884 and taught school in the Colony. He was the first teacher to attempt to teach the News editor. He started the Almena Star in 1885. He later moved to Jennings where for about 30 years he owned and published the Jennings Echo. A year ago he sold the paper and is giving his exclusive attention to his real estate business and confectionary. (page 57)

Simmons, Joel H., was born in McDonough county, Ill. in 1847 and came to this county in 1872. He was elected county clerk in 1873 and he taught school at Norton and served four terms as county superintendent. He was an able writer and has had many of his articles published. He served as postmaster of Norton for a number of years. He now resides in Topeka. (page 57)

Smith, L. A., came here in 1885 and took land five miles south of Norton. He was a veteran of the Civil War. He secured the organization of Orange township and served as justice of the peace of this township for several years. He died in Norton some time ago. (page 57)

Sproul, Arvil, was born in Doniphan county, in 1859. Moved to this county 1878 with his father Frank Sproul, who built a large frame house on his homestead east of Edmond. This was the first frame building erected in Sand Creek township. He still lives near Edmond. (page 57)

Stoddard, B.F., was born in 1838 in Shenango county, N.Y. He was a Civil War veteran and homesteaded six miles northwest of Norton in 1878. He was a carpenter by trade. Died in 1905. His widow still resides in Norton. (page 57)

Stotts, James W., was born in Morrisburg, Iowa, in 1854. Came to Norton in 1875. He was at one time editor of the Calvert Gazette. (page 58)

Stowell, Chas. S., came to this county in 1872. He was killed in the Custer massacre. (page 58)

Street, W. D., came to Norton county in 1873. He was a noted hunter and Indian fighter, and in later days, a lecturer of some note. He died at Oberlin some years ago. (page 58)

Tate, John, came to Norton county in 1879 and homesteaded in Sand Creek township. (page 58)

Taylor, John, the first trustee of Sand Creek township, settled there in 1875. Later moved to eastern Kansas. (page 58)

Thompson, J. D., came here in 1875 and settled in Sand Creek township. (page 58)

Thompson, James R., came from Indiana in 1880 and settled in Grant township. He is a veteran of the Civil War and lost a leg while serving his country in those trying days. He entered the ministry after the war and for many years served in the ranks of the Higher Army. He is now retired and living in Norton. Within the last year Rev. Thompson has given several thousand dollars to the cause of Christianity. Norton county has no more honored citizen that Rev. J. R. Thompson. (page 58)

Trescott, E., came to Norton county in 1878. He was elected county surveyor in 1882. (page 58)

Turner, Dr. E. M., was born in Senawa [sic] county Mich. Was a Civil War veteran. Came to Norton county in 1881. Served as coroner for some time. Was Nortonís first health officer. He moved to Texas some years ago where he now resides. (page 58)

Tupper, Wallace, came to Norton county in 1878 and settled in Emmett township. (page 58)

Underwood, James N., came from Iowa in 1879 and settled in Grant township. He served as Trustee of Lincoln township for ten terms. He was prominent in politics. (page 58)

Urschel, John H., was born in Handcock [sic] county, Ohio, in 1854. (page 58)

Vail, Charles, was born in Iowa Co. Wis. in 1856. Came to Norton county and settled Solomon twp in 1873. He afterwards moved west. (page 58)

Vance, Caleb, was born in 1828 in Portland, Me., Came to Norton in 1873 and homesteaded near Almena. He was admitted to the bar in May of the same year, at the first term of court ever held in Norton county. He was elected to the legislature in 1873 and secured the passage of the bill restoring the county to the original of Norton, from Bilings [sic]. He died in 1893 and was buried at Long Island. (page 58)

Vance, Jim and Fred, settled near Almena in 1872. Jim was county commissioner for two years. They sold out in 1880 and left the country. (page 58)

VanLew, Prof. G. B., was one of the early school teachers of the county. He was accidentally killed in 1879. (page 58)

VanMeter, Baker A., came to Norton county in 1871 with his brother Jule J., who still resides in the county. (page 58)

VanSant, J. B., came here in 1872. He was a veteran of the Civil War. Died some years ago. (page 58)

Vining, Dick, came to Norton county in 1880. He was city marshall [sic] for two terms and was deputy sheriff in 1881. He is now at Grants Pass, Oregon. (page 58)

Vining, J. W., was born in Henry county, Illinois, in 1851 and settled on the Solomon near Edmond. He was elected sheriff several times and was also door keeper in the State senate in 1891. He was in the jewelry business with his son-in-law, John Recht until his death in 1913. (page 58)

Wald, John L., was born at Stavanger, Norway in 1835. Came to this country and settled at Almena in 1876. (page 58)

Wallace, Chas. C., was born in 1860. Came to Norton in early life and died here in 1894. (page 58)

Wallace, John, was born in Jefferson county, Ind. in 1827. Came to this county 1876. He at one time owned and ran the mill at Almena, also one at Lenora and Norton. (page 58)

Walleck, Henry, was born in Millersburg, Ohio, in 1836. Came here in 1879. He still lives in Norton co. (page 58)

Waller, Harlow M., was born in Crawfords [sic] county, Ohio in 1836. He came to Norton county in 1886. Was a veteran of the Civil War, and by trade a carpenter. He and his partner, Mr. Kuney built the Norton courthouse in 1888 which is the best building, considering price, in Kansas. Mr. Waller died at his home in Norton in 1913. (page 58)

Walter, Mathias, was born in Prussia in 1830. Came to this county in 1878. He still resides just southwest of Norton. (page 58)

Warner, P., came to this county in 1874 and died at Leota in 1881. (page 58)

Weaver, George M., came from to Iowa to Norton county in 1879. He returned to Iowa ten years later. (page 58)

Weaver, Noah, apened [sic] a store at Leota in 1874, and started the town of Edmond in 1879 and built a mill at that place in 1880. (page 58)

Webber, Benjamin F., came here in 1879 and settled in Garfield township. He is a Civil War veteran. He died some years ago, but his widow still lives at Norton. (page 58)

Wheeler, Byron V., came to Norton county in 1879. He was in the barber business under the firm name of Wheeler & Bower until recently when he sold out and retired, and still lives in Norton. (page 58)

Whitaker, Isaac, settled three miles northeast of Norton in 1874. He was born in 1838 in Clinton county, Ohio. (page 58)

White, R. E., was born in Monroe county, Ohio. He was a veteran of the Civil War and came to Norton county in 1879 where he engaged in the drug business. He was a physician and was elected coroner in 1879. He was elected mayor of Norton in 1888-89 and again in 1894. He now lives at Zanesville, Ohio. (page 58)

Williams, Frank B., was born in 1850. Came to Norton county in 1872. Was elected treasurer in 1873 and in the same year engaged in the mercantile business with W. E. Case. He was postmaster here in 1879 following Captain Jarvis, and for a time he ran a restaurant. In 1882 he moved to Oregon. (page 58)

Williams, Isaiah, was born in 1827. He was a Civil War veteran and he came to the county in 1873. Now resides in Missouri. (page 58)

Williams, John, came to Norton county in 1873 and took land five miles east of Norton. He was in the grocery business at Norton for some time. Now lives in Oregon. (page 58)

Williams, Richard, was born in Columbiana county, Ohio in 1820, came to Norton county in 1873 and settled four miles east of Norton. Mr. Williams organized the Norton town association, and was instrumental in obtaining the county seat for Norton, and to him largely belong the credit. Died some years ago. (page 58)

Wilson, Jones, was born in Ohio in 1840. He was a veteran of the Civil War, and homesteaded in this county in 1873. He now lives in Iowa. (page 58)

Wincklepleck, Solomon, came to this county in 1875. He was born in Wood county, Ohio in 1831. He died some years ago. (page 58)

Wood, Darrell, was born in 1855, and came to this county in 1878 where he settled in Emmett township. He still lives near Norton. (page 58)

Wrager, Albert, came to Norton county in 1872. He was a Civil War veteran and was elected constable of Center township in 1872. (page 58)

Wrager, George Washington, came here in 1872 and was elected township clerk in the same year, and again in 1873. He opened a meat market here in 1877. (page 58)

Wray, Emmeth [Emereth], was born in 1845 in Benson county, Mich., was a Civil War veteran and came to Norton county in 1879 where he homesteaded in Highland township. He at one time conducted a store at Dellvale, but now resides in Norton. (page 58)

Wray, James F., came from Wisconsin and settled at Edmond in 1884 where went into the mercantile business. He was postmaster of Edmond from 1888 until 1893. He still lives near Edmond. (page 58)

Wray, Joseph, was born in New York in 1824. He came to this county in 1875. He was postmaster of Long Branch from 1875 to 1880. (page 58)

Wright, Jesse S., was born in McDonnong [sic] county, Illinois and came to Norton county in 1874. He was at one time in the creamery business at Norton, and also ran a furniture store under the firm name of Wright Bros. Later he conducted a clothing store. He named Emmett township in honor of his old home township in Illinois. He was elected county clerk in 1889 and again in 1891. He now runs an elevator at Athol, and also has interests in Bellaire. (page 58)

Wright, Joshua F., came to Norton county in 1876 and took a homestead two miles north of Norton. (page 58)

Youngman, Dr., came to Almena in 1885. Now lives near Calvert. (page 58)

Zimmerman, Henry, came from Adams county, Nebraska, in 1872. He left in 1884 and afterwards moved to Utah. (page 58)



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©2005 Ardie Grimes.  Transcribed from Norton County News Historical Number 1870 - 1916, re-organized and re-formatted for ease of use. These pages are dedicated to free access to records, documents and photos of historical and genealogical value. Documents contained herein may be copied for personal, non-commercial use as long as this statement remains on all copied material.   These records, documents and photos may not be reproduced, published or re-published for any reason, in any format,  including electronic (web pages or CD's) and print, without prior written consent of the contributors or copyright holders.

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Last updated 26 February 2005