Frank W. Peterson

This biographical portrait is found in the "Portrait and Biographical Album of Washington, Clay, and Riley Counties, Kansas"; Chicago; Chapman Bros; 1890, pg. 629.; located in the KANSAS Room at the Kansas City, Kansas Public Library. The Kansas Collection Librarian is Georgia Slaughter at gslaug@kckpl.lib.ks.us . The Inter-Library Loan librarian is Joan Gandert at gandert@kckpl.lib.ks.us

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Frank W. Peterson is a well-known and highly respected young man of East Randolph, Riley County. He is now cashier of the Farmer's Bank, is a partner in the firm of Johnson & Co., dealers in general merchandise, and also handles coal and grain. He owns a residents and lots in East Randolph, and also three acres with a residence adjoining Randolph. He possesses the pleasant, cordial manners which are so potent a factor in a merchant's success, as well as business ability of a high order. He is intelligent, shrewd and discriminating in his judgment regarding business deals and demands, and is altogether one of the most influential and promising young citizens of the county.

Mr. Peterson comes of a long line of honored and honorable Swedish ancestry, his parents being R? and Catherine (Setterberg) Peterson. The father was born in Nerka, and owned and operated a large farm there. He was a prominent and influential citizen, holding public offices, among them being that of Deputy Sheriff. In 1869, he came to America and located in Warren County, Pennsylvania, where he engaged in farming until 1872, when he removed to Crawford County, resuming the same occupation near Titusville. After a time he sold his farm and entered into the grocery business. In East Titusville and in it is still engaged. Both the parents belong to the Lutheran Church. The mother was born in Varmland. She bore six children - John, August, Carrie, Frank, Tillie, and Lottie. Carrie is now Mrs. Smythe, residing in Denver, Col.; Lottie (now Mrs. Strance) lives in Grand Valley, Pa.; John, August and Tittle are deceased.

The gentleman of whom we write was born near Christianshamn, Sweden, June 24, 1859, and brought up on his father's farm. The schools of that section were excellent and after having passed through the lower departments he entered the High School, where he was still in attendance when his parents determined to come to America, he being then but eleven years old. They left Göttenberg and reached New York, via Hull and Liverpool. Mr. Peterson attended the Titusville schools until sixteen years old, when he entered Meadville University for one year, and learned telegraphy. At the age of seventeen he took charge of a station on the Pipe Line, near Titusville, and continued there for nine months, when he went into the commercial department of the Titusville Associated Press. He remained in the business until the fall of 1876, when he came to Randolph and engaged in clerking. In 1885, he began a real estate and insurance business, and soon after founded the Bank of Randolph, which he conducted until April, 1887, when he sold to J. A. Johnson & Co. He then established the Farmer's Bank of East Randolph, and the store in partnership with his father-in-law under the firm name of S. P. Johnson & Co. They have erected the buildings in which they carry on their business and are prospering in their enterprise.

In Randolph on New Year's Day, 1885, the rites of wedlock were celebrated between Mr. Peterson and Miss Mary A. Johnson. The bride was born in Butler County, this State, and is a lady of education and accomplishments. She has attended the State Agricultural College at Manhattan, and has taught music, in which she is proficient. Her union with our subject has been blessed by the birth of three children: Gertrude, Leonora, and an infant named Florence B.

The father of Mrs. Peterson is S. P. Johnson, senior member of the firm mentioned at the beginning of this sketch, and who was born in Kalmars Län, Sweden, August 17, 1837. He is a son of Nels Johnson, who was born in the same place and was engaged in farming in his native land until 1854, when both father and son came to America. On becoming a resident of the United States, Mr. Johnson located in Marshall County, Ill., where he was occupied in tilling the soil until 1858. At that date he came to Kansas, making the journey be ox-team, and located in Butler County, among the Indians and border ruffians. His father accompanied him and spent his last days in this State.

In the fall of 1861, Mr. Johnson entered the service of the United States Government, being a member of "Jim Lane's Band" for six months. In the spring of 1864, he came to this county and located on the Big Blue, where he still lives. He started with 163 acres of raw land, and has been financially successful, being now the owner of 700 acres of improved land, which he superintends, and an interest in the buildings and business before mentioned. He laid out and named the town of East Randolph. In politics, he is a Republican. In Butler County, he served as County Commissioner in 1863-64.

The mother of Mrs. Peterson was in her maidenhood Miss Mary E. Thomas. She was born in Lawrence County, Ind., January 4, 1838, and is a daughter of Hendrickson Thomas, who was born in North Carolina. As early as 1826, Mr. Thomas entered land in Lawrence County, Ind., and engaged in tilling the soil. In 1848 he went to Buchanan County, Mo., farming there until 1855, when he removed to Kansas. His death occurred in Butler County in 1876. The mother of Mrs. Peterson was but five years old when she came to Missouri, and coming to this State while in her teens, she well remembers the Border Ruffian days. Her union with S. P. Johnson resulted in the birth of six children, Mrs. Peterson being the oldest. The others are still at home. They bear the names of Margaret, Ellen, John, Alice, and LeRoy.

Mr. Peterson has been Township Clerk for six years and is now serving his fifth year as Notary Public. He belongs to the I.O.O.F. at Randolph, in the Farmers' Lodge of A. F. & A. M. of the same place, and to the Randolph Lodge, K. of P., of which he is Trustee. He is active worker in the ranks of the Republican Party, and has been delegate to county and State conventions.

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