Barber County Kansas
Mrs. Susie Greer Hagerman can tell a life of thrills and sorrows which beset the early day settler of the Plains, and she doesn't require one bit of imagination in the telling.
She was born in 1880 in Holden, Missouri, and when she was four and one-half years old her father decided to settle in Kansas. He traveled the route by covered wagon, while her mother and the children went by train to Kingman, Kansas, where they were met by their father and carried the rest of the way in-land by covered wagon.
She grew up in a wilderness where they were frightened by the Indians and tales of their scalping of the white men left them always "fearful of any strange rider" on the Plains.
She married her school teacher, when she was only fourteen she was a large child for her age, and guessed, "my parents thought I was old enough to get married."
They were married in Deerhead where he was teaching and raised two sons and two daughters, losing two in infancy.
Her oldest son, Chester, gave his life in Flander's Field in World War I, in the lull following the Meuse-Argonne during clean-up operations either from a sniper's gun or an exploding shell.
Her oldest daughter is Mrs. Sybil Lake, of Dumas with whom she makes her home, another son, Ralph lives in Napa, California, and her oldest daughter Margaret, lives in Amarillo.
Mrs. Hagerman came to the North Plains in 1943, living in Amarillo, for a period of time and coming to Dumas in 1954. She lost her husband, after a long illness, in the year of 1929 in Kansas. They were operating a small country store and Post Office at the town of Lasswell, where they recounted some hilarious times. Those were the "good old days" when the community Store was the gathering place for miles around and special celebrations attracted a noisy crowd.
Pioneers, of the Plains, they came on dusty trails, but always found a haven of food and rest at the Country Store.
There is one part of the early day history, she has a memento of she will cherish to the end of time, that is the miniature "hatchet" locket which was one of Carrie Nation's symbols of her stand for prohibition.
Mrs. Hagerman as a girl learned to play the organ on Carrie Nation's old organ, and through the valiant spirit of this pioneer crusader, she learned the meaning of fortitude, and developed a courage to find a peace and solace on the Plains.
Thanks to Jim Giles, grandson of Susie Hagerman for finding and contributing the above news article to this web site, to Kim Fowles for sending it to the webmaster, and to Landon Fowles for technical assistance to Kim Fowles in designing this page!