Barber County Kansas

The Chosen Land: Barber County, Kansas, page 97.

John Lester Balding

by Carol Cline

Carrie Louella was born December 26, 1896, to James Wesley and Matilda L. (Hayden) Springer of Medicine Lodge, Kansas. She was the 9th of the ten children. Her mother, Matilda, came from Darlington, Indiana,and her father, James, from Missouri. They made their home on the Springer homestead south of town. C.O. Warren now owns 155 acres of the original homestead.

Carrie united with the Christian Church in 1914. She attended Barber County schools and finished in 1917. She taught school four years. While teaching at Grandview, they heard the bells ringing in town. Someone came by the school to tell them World War I had ended. They took the rest of the day off and played ball.

John Lester, son of Lewis and Ella (Ligon) Balding, was born July 22, 1896, about six miles east of Medicine Lodge - one mile east of Walstead School, known as the Rausch place. When he was 3 years old, his family moved to the Balding place just west of Walstead School, where he grew to manhood.

John has been a farmer all his life, except during WWI. He served in the Lafayette Division 11, Motor Ambulance Co., Camp Meade, Maryland from August 25, 1918, to January 25, 1919. He drove an ambulance picking up flu victims, delivering them to hospitals during the great flu epidemic. He was in the Army when the Armistice was signed. He has been a member of the Christian Church more than 50 years.

John and Carrie were married in the Christian Church Parsonage by Rev. O.L. Shelton, in Medicine Lodge on September 6, 1921. They had nine children: Ruth (Bower), Keith, Richard, Carol (Cline), Cora Lou (Templeton), James, Jean and Jerry (died at age 2 months), and Gary. They had 20 grandchildren (Jerry Lee Cline was deceased Feb. 22, 1952), 14 great grandchildren, with two more greats due later this year (1979).

Carrie's family members were Hattie (m. Newt Hamlin), James Blaine (m. Ina Rogers), Cora (m. Orron Warren), Maude (m. Jim Jarnigan), Bessie (m. Clarence Bandruff), Eddson, Herbert, Lulu (m. R.G. Hall), Carrie (m. John Balding), and Lucy (m. Ray Ives).

John's family with whom he grew up were Ray (m. Ada Mae Kritmeyer - then Cora Wells), Florence (m. Otis Shore), Merle (m. Paul Fair), Robert (m. Lois Hart Whitaker), John (m. Carrie Springer), and Lewis (m. Mildred Warren).

Many of these families have made Barber County their home throught the years. A number of the children and grandchildren continue family "Roots" in the same area as the older generation.

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