William Henry Feather is a man of superior business ability and executive force, whose labors are bringing him credible and gratifying success. For several years Mr. Feather was an able representative of the agricultural interests of Seward county, while today he is the leading and exclusive furniture dealer of Liberal. He was born near Youngstown, Trumbull county, Ohio, September 5, 1865, a son of James R. and Margaret Hawk Feather. The father was born in Ohio September 20, 1842, and when grown became a coal miner. At the outbreak of the Civil war he enlisted in Company G, Tenth Pennsylvania Reserves, serving three years. He was severely wounded at the battle of Bull Run and for eleven months was in the hospital. Most of his service was with the Army of the Potomac and his regiment participated in thirty-five engagements, among them Gettysburg, Seven Days' Battle, and the siege around Richmond. At the close of the war he again worked as a coal miner in Ohio until 1878, when, with his family, Mr. Feather came to Kansas, locating on government land, in Ottawa county, and now resides at Minneapolis, Kan. He was register of deeds of Ottawa county four years, being elected on the Republican ticket. He is commander of his post of the Grand Army of the Republic, an office which he fills with merit. James R. Feather married Margaret Hawk in 1862. She was the daughter of John and Polly Crawford Hawk, the former a native of Germany and the latter of Ireland. Mrs. Feather was born in Mercer county, Pennsylvania, June 30, 1845, and died on the Kansas homestead, December 9, 1886. There were nine children in the Feather family: John Ellsworth, now a merchant at May, Okla.; William Henry; Mary Armena, now the wife of J. B. Lane, a merchant of Kansas City, Mo.; Clara Eva, the wife of Ford Morris, a farmer of Ottawa county; Anna Jane, the wife of Richard Koppmans, Pella, Iowa; Bernice, deceased; Joseph Crawford, deceased; James Roy, a salesman of Kansas City, Mo., and Margaret, the wife of William Nye, a farmer of Ottawa county. William Feather's father was married a second time, in 1888, to Mrs. Sina Nye, of Ottawa county, who has one child, Elfie, born in 1891.
William Feather received his education in Ohio and the public schools of Kansas. He removed from Ottawa county in July, 1887, to locate on a government claim in Seward county. For five years he worked on a cattle ranch, thoroughly learning the business, and in 1892 started to raise cattle himself, having bought grazing ground for this purpose. Mr. Feather took an active part in all public affairs of the country and in 1899 was elected county treasurer on the Republican ticket, an office which he filled five years. He served as a member of the city council of Liberal five years, and has been chairman of the school board nine years. For five years before coming to Liberal to live Mr. Feather was trustee of Fargo township and acted as Federal census examiner in 1900. On retiring from public office he established the first and only exclusive furniture store in Liberal, where he carries on an extensive and growing business, being regarded as one of the most enterprising men of the community. Mr. Feather is a Thirty-second degree Mason and a Knight Templar, a member of the Wichita Consistory. At the present time he is Grand Deacon of the Grand Lodge of Kansas, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons. On July 2, 1893, Mr. Feather was married at Liberal to Pearl Brown, who was born at Altoona, Kan., July 18, 1875. She was educated in the public schools of Seward county and at the State normal at Emporia. Mr. and Mrs. Feather have two children: Mildred, born June 27, 1894, and Marguerite, born November 25, 1895. They also have an adopted daughter, Evelyn, born June 3, 1907. Mr. Feather is one of the progressive men of business who are doing a great work in building up the Southwest, carrying civilization to the "short grass" country as did the earlier pioneers to northern and central Kansas.Pages 363-364 from a supplemental volume 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 October 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM196. It is a single volume 3.
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