Sylvester M. Corey, of Council Grove, a pioneer of Morris county and one of its most prominent and respected citizens; was born on a farm in Erie county, New York, Feb. 29, 1840. His parents were Rufus B. and Susan (Myers) Corey, the former of whom was born in Saratoga county, New York, in 1812, to parents that were natives of England. Rufus B. Corey was an iron molder during his earlier career, but later became a farmer and throughout the remainder of his life gave his attention to agricultural pursuits. While a resident of Erie county, New York, he took a prominent part in public life and filled different county offices. In 1860 he removed to Hillsdale county, Michigan, where he engaged in farming until 1878, when he became a resident of Morris county, Kansas, where he bought land. He retired from the farm in 1885, however, and died at Council Grove in 1891. To Rufus B. and Susan Corey were born six children: Chloe, Daniel, Sylvester M., Hiram, Amos (deceased), and Phoebe. The mother was a native of New York state and died at Parkerville, Kan., in 1887. She was a devout member of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Sylvester M. Corey was educated in the public schools of Erie county, New York, and at Aurora Academy. After school days he worked with his father on a dairy farm in Erie county, until 1860, when he accompanied his parents to Reading, Hillsdale county, Michigan. There he was engaged in the shoe and grocery business on his own account until 1870, at which time he removed to Morris county, Kansas. Taking up a homestead in Elm Creek township, he there engaged in farming and stock raising until 1873. He participated in the organization of Elm Creek township and was its first justice of the peace. in 1873 he removed to Council Grove to secure his children better educational facilities and there conducted a hotel until 1890. Possessed of shrewd business judgment, he made judicious purchases of farm and ranch lands from time to time, which he disposed of to an advantage, and today he is one of the large property owners of Council Grove, besides holding other valuable property interests.
Mr. Corey has been married three times. His first wife was Miranda E. Bartholomew, who died in 1866, leaving two children: Arthur O., who died in 1899, and Fred G., born March 10, 1863, who is a graduate of the Morris County High School, the Emporia Business College and of the Kansas City Dental College, and is a member of the faculty of the Topeka Dental College and an active practitioner of his profession at Council Grove. The second union of Mr. Corey was to Mary E. Hancock, of Reading, Mich., who died in 1891, at Council Grove, Kan. Mr. Corey's third marriage was on June 20, 1894, to Mrs. Effie Swetnam (nee Greene), a daughter of N. Greene, the fourth governor of Kansas. She was born at Manhattan, Kan., on June 12, 1865, and was there reared and educated, being a graduate of the Manhattan HIgh School. On May 25, 1886, she was married to Dr. W. B. Swetnam, who died Feb. 25, 1892, at Parkerville, and who was a Mason. To their union was born, on April 5, 1890, a daughter, Alice, who died Sept. 16, 1892. In political affairs Mr. Corey is an active Republican. He has now retired from active business life and spends much of his time in travel.Pages 469-470 from volume III, part 1 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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