A Twentieth century history and biographical record of Crawford County, Kansas, by Home Authors; Illustrated. Published by Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, IL : 1905. 656 p. ill. Transcribed by staff and students at Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas.

1905 History of Crawford County Kansas


John W. Allison is one of the most extensive buyers, feeders and shippers of cattle in Grant township, Crawford county, doing a business aggregating as high as twenty-eight thousand dollars annually. Everything about his large premises indicate prosperous and methodical management, and his is one of the model farms of the entire county. He takes the more pride in these material circumstances in that they are almost entirely the result of his untiring effort and diligence from the age of boyhood. He is a self-made man and the master of his own destiny, owing little to anything but his perseverance and courage in overcoming the obstacles of life. He really began to do battle with the world when he was about nine years old, and consequently deserves the competence which he has gained.

Mr. Allison was born in Sangamon county, Illinois, February 13, 1858, being a son of James and Hanna A. (Erickson) Allison, the former a native of Kentucky and the latter of Norway. His father died in Illinois in 1862, at the age of forty-two, but his mother is living in the first house west of John W. Allison's, being now sixty-eight years old.

John W. Allison went to live among strangers when he was six years old, and the education that he received was obtained in the common schools of his native state. He began working on a farm for his board when he was nine years old, and continued in this way in Illinois until October 17, 1871, when he arrived in Kansas. He worked by the month until September, 1874, and then returned to Illinois and worked there until February 12, 1878. This constant labor was putting him ahead in the world somewhat, and when he returned to Kansas in 1878 he took up a claim of one hundred and sixty acres on what was known as the Neutral Lands. From this beginning, in the subsequent twenty-five years, he has accumulated a fine property of five hundred and twenty acres. He has a modern residence, with running hot and cold water and bath, and all the comforts of an ideal farm home. His up-to-date stock barn is sixty-four by one hundred and twelve feet, and he has the best of facilities for carrying on his large business.

Mr. Allison was married January 8, 1880, to Miss Emma B. Marker, a daughter of James and Elizabeth (Higgenbotham) Marker, native of Illinois and of Pennsylvania, respectively, and the former of whom died in 1871 at the age of forty-nine, and the latter on April 15, 1900, at the age of fifty-seven. Eight children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Allison: Joseph C., a farmer, wedded Miss Ethel Bringle; Myrtle A., who died at the age of three months; Florence E., wife of Dr. L. H. Thurston, mentioned elsewhere in this work; Maude E., wedded Frank Tannehill, a resident of the city of Pittsburg and a machinist; Jessie A., Olie B., Gelo P. and Robert E., all at home. The family are members of the McCune Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Allison affiliates with the blue lodge, No. 237, F. & A. M.; was with Camp No. 2870, M. W. A.; and is a member of the A. H. T. A., all at McCune. He has served as township clerk and also on the school board, and in politics is a stanch Republican.