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The settlements within the borders of the county as first described date back to the '30s, when Capt. Alley of Kentucky established a trading post on the Kansas river. But settlement within the present borders did not begin until 1855, when the county was divided into three townships, Douglas, Atchison and Haliday. Franklin township was formed in 1856, Jefferson in 1858, Grant in 1870, Netawaka in 1871, Whiting, Liberty and Soldier in 1872; Cedar and Washington in 1873 and Straight Creek, Adrian and Garfield since then. The townships of Atchison and Haliday no longer exist. The first settlers in Douglas township, who came in 1855, were John Rippetoe, William Cunningham, David Rice, Josiah Seal, Byron Stewart, J. W. Willard, A. W. Bainbridge, Hugh Piper and Rufus Rice. The land was not surveyed and the settlers established their lines by stakes or blazes on trees. They got their mail from Indianola, Ozawkie or Grasshopper Falls.
Cedar township was settled in 1855 by S. J. Elliott; Jefferson township in 1854 by Francis Smith; Franklin township in 1854 by N. D. Lewis; Grant township in the late '50s by Peter Dickson, R. P. Hamm, William Cruzan, J. P. Fraidley, John James, S. Stephenson and T. Keir; Liberty township was settled at a date not given, by Missourians, and is said to be the oldest settlement in the county. Some of the early settlers were: Charles Bateman, J. B. Parrot, Alfred Fuller, James Piper, W. R. Hodges and J. W. Taylor; Straight Creek township in 1855 by J. H. Thompson ; Soldier township in 1857 by William Kline, Henry Rancier, William Knipe, W. Branham and the Fairbanks; and Washington, Netawaka and Whiting townships were not settled until in the '60s.
The first election for county officers was held on Oct. 1, 1855. The first officers were: James Kuykendall, probate judge; J. T. Wilson, sheriff; Anthony Wilson, treasurer; and James Kuykendall, William Alley and P. P. Beeler, commissioners. James Kuykendall was at different times probate judge, register of deeds, county clerk and prosecuting attorney. He was one of the early business men of the county. District court was held for the first time by Judge S. D. Lecompte Sept. 24, 1855.
The name of the county was changed from Calhoun to Jackson by Golden Silvers, who was the representative in the legislature in 1858. The county officials did not recognize the new name until a year later. In 1858 a vote was taken to choose a new county seat and Holton received 79 votes over all other contestants. The county voted 51 to 12 for a free-state constitution.
The famous Lane road (q. v.) ran through Jackson county and the "Battle of the Spurs" occurred at Fuller's ford on Straight creek, near one of the stations of the "underground railway." During the Civil war Jackson county furnished 175 volunteers, most of whom joined the Eleventh cavalry, the Fifth cavalry and the Eighth infantry.
Prior to 1859 the schools in the county were carried on chiefly by private subscription. The first school was taught by Miss Harriet Warfield in 1857 in Douglas township. A log school house was built the following year and in 1859 district No. 12 was organized. The first school in Jefferson township was taught by Mrs. H. S. Hart; in Grant township by E. S. Hulan; in Liberty township by Sophia Lattimer; in Straight creek township by James B. Hastings; and the first real school house was built south of Holton in 1858 out of logs. In 1910 there were in the county 90 school districts, with over 5,000 persons of school age, and 60 libraries.
The first marriage for which any definite date is given was between John Coleman and Phoebe Hastings on Jan. I, 1857; the first birth in the county was probably that of O. F. Cunningham. Some of the early ministers were: Rev. R. P. Hamm, Rev. Byron Stewart, who settled in Douglas township in 1855, Rev. Eli H. Robinson, Rev. William Knipe, who held services in a sawmill in Jefferson township in 1858; Rev. J. W. Williams and Rev. Pardee Butler, who was mobbed in Atchison for his anti-slavery opinions.
In 1871 the voters adopted a proposition to issue bonds amounting to $160,000 to get the Kansas Central railroad, and the next year donated the county's stock to the railroad company. A delay in building the road from Holton to the limits of the county caused the company to forfeit all but $60,000 of the money. This line is now a part of the Union Pacific system. The Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific runs from Topeka to Holton, thence northeast to Whiting, leaving the county near the northeast corner. The Kansas City Northwestern, a branch of the Missouri Pacific, runs from Valley Falls through Holton and Circleville and north into Nemaha county. Another branch of the Missouri Pacific enters the county from Nemaha and runs through the northeastern part through Netawaka and Whiting. The Topeka & Marysville, a branch of the Union Pacific, is a new road crossing the southwest corner of the county.
The surface of the county is undulating plains. The largest stream is the Big Soldier, which flows from north to south through the western part of the county and empties into the Kansas river. Other streams are Cross creek, Little Soldier, North and South Cedar creeks, Straight, Elk, Spring, Bills and Muddy creeks.
The county contains 421,120 acres, of which 316,163 are under cultivation (the Indian lands, comprising at present 74,400 acres, are not cultivated to any extent). The field crops in 1910 totaled $2,013,064.78, of which corn amounted to $1,328,664; oats, $210,974, and wheat $24,351.68. The value of all farm products for that year was $3,322,371.63. Hay crops and Irish potatoes were also extensively raised. There are more than a quarter of a million fruit trees. Jackson has a high rank as a fruit growing locality, also for the breeding of thoroughbred stock. One source of wealth is the quarries of white, gray limestone. Brick clay and gypsum are found along the creeks. The population in 1910 was 16,861.
Jaggard, à railroad town in the southeastern part of Leavenworth county, is on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe R. R. 2 miles northwest of Bonner Springs, from which it has rural free delivery, and 19 miles from Leavenworth, the county seat.
Jamestown, an incorporated city of the third class in Cloud county, is located at the junction of two branches of the Missouri Pacific R. R. and on Buffalo creek, 10 miles west of Concordia, the county seat. It has a bank, a feed mill, stone quarries, 2 grain elevators, a weekly newspaper (the Kansas Optimist), telegraph and express offices and an internationl money order postoffice with four rural routes. There are about 50 business establishments. The population in 1910 was 462. The town was founded in 1878, and incorporated in 1883.
Jamestown Exposition.—(See Expositions.)
Janssen, a country postoffice in Ellsworth county, is located on the St. Louis & San Francisco R. R. 5 miles southwest of Ellsworth, the county seat. It has a general store, a mill and a grain elevator. The population in 1910 was 15.
Jaqua, a small settlement of Cheyenne county, is located on the south fork of the Republican river in the southwestern part of the county, about 18 miles from St. Francis, the county seat. It has a money order postoffice and is a trading point for the neighborhood. St. Francis is the nearest railroad station.
Jaramillo, Juan, a Spanish soldier and narrator, was with Coronado in the expedition to Quivira in 1540-42. Some years later he wrote an account of the expedition, the original Spanish manuscript of which is in the Buckingham Smith “Coleccion.” It has been translated into French by Ternaux-Compans, and into English by George P. Winship, assistant in American history in Harvard University. In this account Jaramillo says that when the Indian guide, Isopete, saw the Arkansas river he recognized it as the southern boundary of Quivira. Some of the historians of the Coronado expedition refer to him as "Captain" Jaramillo, and he was evidently a man of some prominence and influence at that period. (See Coronado.)
Jarbalo, a village of Leavenworth county, is situated on the Leavenworth & Topeka R. R. 13 miles southwest of Leavenworth. It has a money order postoffice, general stores, agricultural implements house, express office, and in 1910 had a population of 100. The town is the shipping and supply station for a rich agricultural district.
Jasper, a small settlement in the northeastern part of 'Linn county, is about 15 miles from Mound City, the county seat, and 8 miles southeast of La Cygne, from which point mail is delivered by rural carrier.
Jasper, a post hamlet of Meade county, is a station on the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific R. R. 6 miles west of Meade, the county seat. It is a local trading point and does some shipping. The population was 20 in 1910.
Jay, a hamlet in the western part of Leavenworth county, is 15 miles from Leavenworth and 6 miles southwest of Easton, the most convenient railroad station, from which place mail is delivered by rural carrier.
Jayhawkers.—The origin of the term "Jayhawker” appears to be veiled in uncertainty. During the Civil war the members of the Seventh Kansas regiment, commanded by Col. C. R. Jennison, became known as "Jayhawkers," and probably from this fact the jayhawker came to be regarded by many as purely a Kansas institution. But there is plenty of evidence that the word was in use long before the outbreak of the Civil war. There is a report that it was used freely by the Texans during their struggle for independence, but this is not well authenticated.
In 1849 a party of gold seekers from Galesburg, Ill., bound over. land for California, took the name of jayhawkers. Adjt.-Gen. Fox says the name was coined on the Platte river in that year, and offers the following explanation of how it was adopted: “Some kind of hawks, as they sail up in the air reconnoitering for mice and other small prey, look and act as though they were the whole thing. Then the audience of jays and other small but jealous and vicious birds sail in and jab him until he gets tired of show life and slides out of trouble in the lower earth. Now, perhaps this is what happens among fellows on the trail-jaybirds and hawks enact the same rôle, pro and con-out of pure devilment and to pass the hours of a long march. At any rate, ours was the crowd that created the word “jayhawker' at the date and locality above stated. . . So far as Kansas is concerned, the word was borrowed or copied; it is not a home product.”
Mr. Fox is corroborated by U. P. Davidson and J. W. Brier, who were members of the Galesburg party, and by Alexander Majors in his “Seventy Years on the Frontier.” On the overland journey these men were lost in Death Valley and narrowly escaped death by starvation. For many years the survivors held annual reunions, and John B. Colton had a large scrap-book filled with newspaper clippings relating to these "jayhawker" meetings.
John J. Ingalls, in the Kansas Magazine for April, 1872, in an article entitled “The Last of the Jayhawkers," says: “The Border Ruffians constructed the eccaleobion in which the jayhawk was hatched, and it broke the shell upon the reedy shores of the Marias des Cygnes. Its habits were not migratory, and for many years its habitat was southern Kansas.” In the same article Mr. Ingalls says “The jayhawk is a creation of mythology. It was an early bird and caught many a Missouri worm."
The jayhawkers alluded to by Mr. Ingalls were the free-state men who composed the band commanded by James Montgomery (q. v.), which for some time in the territorial days kept the pro-slavery settlers of southeastern Kansas in a state of terror. In the winter of 1858-59 the term "jayhawker" was used by J. E. Jones of Fort Scott and George W. Cavert of Osawatomie in letters to the governor, and Gov. Medary made use of it in a communication to the legislature, under date of Jan. 11, 1859, when he said: “Capt. Brown was fortifying himself on Sugar creek and Montgomery claims that he can raise
Good citizens that formerly sustained these men begged to have something done to stop the 'jayhawking' as they termed it," etc.
Richardson, in his "Beyond the Mississippi” (p. 125), says that on June 13, 1858, he "found all the settlers justifying the 'jayhawkers,' a name universally applied to Montgomery's men, from the celerity of their movements and their habit of suddenly pouncing upon an enemy."
The Standard Dictionary defines a "jayhawker" as a "freebooting guerrilla," and applies the term to persons engaged in plundering their political enemies in Kansas and western Missouri during the territorial period. But that work does not make a proper distinction in its definition between the "border ruffians," who represented the cause of slavery, and the free-state men, who were the real jawhawkers.
Another story concerning the origin of the word attributes it to an Irishman named Patrick Devlin, who lived in the village of Osawatomie. According to this story, Devlin was seen entering the village in the fall of 1856 with his horse loaded down with plunder of various kinds, and a neighbor suggested that he must have been on a foraging excursion. Devlin answered that he had been jayhawking, and, when asked the meaning of the term, explained that in Ireland there is a bird called the jayhawk which always worries its prey before devouring it.
From all the evidence at hand the story of the gold seekers of 1849 seems to be the best established. However, through the operations of Montgomery's men and others like them, the "jayhawker" came to be regarded as purely a Kansas institution, and in more recent years the term “Jayhawker” is applied to Kansas men and products, much as the word “Hoosier" is applied to an Indianian, or the work “Buckeye" to a resident of the State of Ohio.
Jean, a country postoffice in Haskell county, is located 7 miles northeast of Santa Fe, the county seat, and 24 miles south of Garden City, the nearest shipping point.
Jefferson, one of the villages of Montgomery county, is located on Fawn creek 8 miles south of Independence, the county seat, and is a station on the Missouri Pacific R. R. It has an express office, a good local trade, and a money order postoffice with one rural route. The population, according to the census of 1910, was 100.
Jefferson County, one of the counties formed and organized by the first territorial legislature, is situated in the northeastern part of the state, the second county west from the Missouri river and the third south from the Nebraska line. It is bounded on the north by Atchison county, on the east by Leavenworth, on the south by the Kansas river, which separates it from Douglas county, and on the west by Shawnee and Jackson counties.
Jefferson is one of the older settled counties of the state and some of the most important events in the history of Kansas took place within its borders. The first visit of white men of which there is any record is the expedition of Prof. Say, which entered the county at the south