Clarence A. Crowley.It is an old saying that a young lawyer must leave home and go among strangers in order to build up a successful legal career. While this is often the case there are marked exceptions to the rule, and the life and achievements of the man whose name introduces this sketch prove that a young man of the right temperament and application may become prominent and honored as a lawyer in the very locality where he first saw the light of day. Among the many rising young attorneys of Kansas few stand higher in their profession than Clarence A. Crowley, Morris county's well known prosecuting attorney. Sixty years ago his grandfather, Allen Crowley, came to that old historic town of Council Grove and thus was one of the pioneers of the Neosho Valley. There he became one of the most progressive and prosperous farmers of that locality and when he died left a large family of sons, daughters and grandchildren. The Crowley family is of English originfirst coming to Virginia and afterwards to Tennessee. Before coming to Kansas they lived for a time in Clay county, Missouri.
Clarence A. Crowley was born at Council Grove, July 28, 1880. His father was Augustus Crowley, long a well known merchant of that city, and his mother, before her marriage, was Fanny Price Roberts of Clay county, Missouri. Clarence was reared in the indulgent and popular home of his parents right on the banks of the Neosho and, being somewhat frail in his youth, early took to books and was an apt student and always popular with the young people of his native city. His desire for an education took him through courses of study somewhat varied in their scopeone year at the Agricultural College at Manhattan, one year at Washburn College, Topeka, and two years at the College of Emporia. During his school life he developed an independence along lines of study and thought and his keen originality chafed somewhat when held in check by obsolete forms or hindered by the consideration of dead issues. Mr. Crowley began the study of law during vacation periods, and was admitted to the bar before he was of age. For a time he was a partner of ex-Judge M. B. Nicholson and afterwards in company with Senator George P. Morehouse formed the law company of Morehouse & Crowley, which for several years was one of the leading law firms of that section of Kansas. Senator Morehouse moved to Topeka and Mr. Crowley being elected county attorney of Morris county, the firm dissolved, and since that time Mr. Cowley has been practicing alone. For a young man his legal experience has been of a wide range and has embraced litigation of the most intricate and important character. His large per cent. of successes, both as a trial lawyer and before the supreme court evinces the labors of a close student of legal principles and industry as a practitioner. He was elected county attorney of Morris county in 1910 and has made a safe, efficient and vigorous public prosecutor. He always refuses assistant counsel, when appearing for the county and state, no matter how many or able are the attorneys for the defense, believing that a county attorney should have the legal ability and energy to enforce the criminal laws without calling upon the county commissioners to go to the expense of hiring assistants. This has made Mr. Crowley popular with the people, who have found that he has the legal ability and force to cope with the best legal talent of the state. Mr. Crowley is possessed of a keen perception and has a careful and analytical legal mind which serves him well in his chosen profession. While able to care for himself in the hurly-burly of a law suit he never loses sight of the real law in the case and the equitable rights of all parties concerned. One of his strong points as a lawyer is that he is never boisterous or domineering in his methods and never becomes excited or loses his head during the trial of a cause. Possessing, as he does, this judicial temperament, although yet young in years, he has already been favorably mentioned for the position of district judge, a position his many friends confidently expect him to fill some day. Mr. Crowley is prominent in Masonic circles, being a member of Chapter 60, Royal Arch Masons, Knights Templars, Commandery 32; and also a member of Isis Temple, Mystic Shrine of Salina, Kan.
On Oct. 22, 1902, he married Miss Pearl Hainer, daughter of D. W. Hainer of Emporia, Kan. Mrs. Crowley's lineage goes back to prominent New England Colonial and Revolutionary families, and she is active as a Daughter of the American Revolution and in other social and civic organizations. They are both members of the First Congregational Church of their home city. Mr. and Mrs. Crowley live in a neat little cottage well up on the slope of Old Belfry Hill, right where the famed Santa Fe trail climbed up to the level of the highland ridge on its way to the far Southwest. Here they can look down upon the historic little city of Council Grove, partially hidden in woodlands, bordering both sides of the beautiful Neosho. Here they can see the very groves and dells where Mr. Crowley played in childhood and muse upon and relate to their friends the fascinating legendary lore of that famous valley.Pages 1065-1066 from volume III, part 2 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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