ALLEN AND WOODSON
EDITED AND COMPILED BY
L. WALLACE DUNCAN
CHAS. F. SCOTT
IOLA REGISTER, PRINTERS AND BINDERS
There is no romance more thrilling and fascinating than the story of the early settlement of Kansas, and her later history holds a charm and interest that is not possessed by that of any other State in the Union. Organized as a Territory when the contest for the extension of slavery was at white heat, it became at once the battle ground of the contending forces, the South determined that it should be held as slave territory, the North equally determined that it should be dedicated to freedom. The struggle drew the gaze of the Nation upon Kansas, and the interest then awakened has continued, through peace and war, to this day. Something is always "going on" in Kansas, and whatever it may be, the people in all the other States want to know about it
Allen and Woodson were among the first counties to be organized in the new Territory, and some of the earliest white settlements in Kansas were made within their borders. Many of their pioneers were identified in an honorable way with the contest for freedom, and they have witnessed many stirring events. It is for the purpose of making a permanent record of these events, to engrave where they will not be lost or forgotten the names of those whose courage and sacrifices laid the foundation for the prosperity and peace we now enjoy, as well as to note the steps by which the present high material development of the two counties has been reached, that the present volume has been compiled and published.
The highest ambition of the publishers has been to make this History accurate and reliable, and they have spared no pains to verify every substantial fact recorded. To do this they have gone, whenever that was possible to the original sources, to documents when such were available, to early newspaper files, and to men and women who have been here from the organization of the counties and who can say: "All of this I saw and part of it I was." And in conducting this research the publishers have been often reminded that their work was not begun too soon, for of the large number of those who
"Crossed the prairies as of old
Our fathers crossed the sea",
and whose courage and endurance laid broad and deep the foundations of the commonwealth, but few now remain, and when they shall have gone "to join the great majority" it will no longer be possible to gather at first
hands the facts that constitute the most interesting, if not the most important, part of the history of the two counties. In collecting and putting in form for permanent preservation the recollections of those who were original observers and actors through the long period that now stretches between the organization of the counties and the present day, the publishers feel that they have done a real service for future generations.
"Biography is history teaching by example," and no history of any American community would be complete that did not contain the life record of many of the men and women who constitute its citizenship. A large portion of this volume is therefore devoted to sketches of those who have in one way or another been identified with the political, social, religious, business or professional life of the community. The limits of the volume have made it impossible to include all who are worthy of a place in it; but so far as it was possible to secure the facts no one has been omitted whose record is an essential part of the history of the two counties.
The publishers wish to make special acknowledgment of their indebtedness to those who have contributed the chapters which appear over their names, and which add greatly to the interest and value of the book. They are very grateful also for the generous encouragement which their undertaking has received and for the advance subscriptions which have made its publication possible.
In a recent article Hon. E. F. Ware says: "Next to having heroes is having historians. A hero who does not get into history is practically wasted. Heroism without history is like a banquet without a guest. The great charm of Kansas is the fact that it has had both heroes and historians. A good printed history is like a bank. In it the valuables and the jewels of the State are kept. Into this bank goes the surplus greatness of the people and of the state."
If the present work shall in any degree merit this accurate and witty definition of a "good printed history," the publishers will feel that their hopes have been justified.Next
Part I: Allen County | Part II: Woodson County
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