James C. Hopper, of Ness City, a prominent banker, farmer and stockman of Ness county, cast his fortunes with Kansas in 1886, and in the quarter of a century since then has acquired a handsome competence as the result of his careful and successful management of his business interests. He comes of stanch Revolutionary ancestry and was born Dec. 26, 1862, at Brownstown, Ind. His father, William R. Hopper, was born in Claiborne county, Tennessee, June 19, 1843, and his great-grandfather, William Hopper, was a patriot in the Revolutionary army and was with Washington at Valley Forge. William R. Hopper, a farmer by occupation, removed to Mercer county, Missouri, in 1868, and to Osborne county, Kansas, in 1871. He left Kansas in 1873, however, and removed to Holt county, Missouri, where he now resides. With the patriotic instincts of his ancestry, he tendered his services to the Union at the time of the Civil war and served as a private in General Sherman's army. On Nov. 2, 1861, he married Miss Permelia Goin, a native of Claiborne county, Tennessee, born Oct. 17, 1843, to parents that were natives of Virginia. Fourteen children were born of their union, nine of whom are still livingJames C., Jeremiah, Melvin S., Leora, Edward, William, Jr., George S., Sarah, and Otis.
James C. Hopper was educated in the public schools of Holt county, Missouri, at the Missouri Northwest State Normal School, at Kirksyule, and at Chapman's Business College, at St. Joseph, Mo. He began teaching in 1881, and for the following four years taught during the winters and farmed during the summers, in Missouri. In April, 1886, he removed to Ness county, Kansas, where he turned his attention wholly to farming and stock raising and has been very successful. Progressive methods characterize the management of both his farming and stock interests and he has given a great deal of attention to the raising of fine-blooded horses and cattle. He is an ardent advocate of dry farming as the only salvation for the arid section of Kansas and his own experiments in that direction well support his theories. In 1892 he was elected county clerk of Ness county and served in that office four years. He is a Democrat in his political views, but was elected to office on the People's ticket. In 1907 he was appointed receiver for the Ness County Bank and, in 1898, organized the Citizens' State Bank, which in 1906 became the Citizens' National Bank of Ness City, of which Mr. Hopper is president. The bank occupies a handsome building of native stone which, in its appointments, is one of the most modern bank buildings in the state. He has other banking interests besides those already mentioned, being a director of the Citizens' State Bank of Utica, of the Bazine State Bank at Bazine, and of the Citizens' State Bank at McCracken, Kan. His fraternal affiliations are with the Masonic order, in which he has attained the Knights Templar degree. While pursuing and achieving an individual success, Mr. Hopper has at the same time thereby materially assisted in the progress and development of Ness county, through which, as a component part of the state, he has therefore helped to advance the prestige of the whole commonwealth and has contributed to its marvelous accomplishment in the first half century of its statehood. It is the efforts of such men as he that have made it the great state it is.
On Nov. 21, 1888, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Hopper and Miss Martha J. Terhune, of Mound City, Neb., who was born March 7, 1868, to George and Fannie (Belt) Terhune. Mr. and Mrs. Hopper have one son, Earl B., born Aug. 21, 1889, in Hodgeman county, Kansas. He is a graduate of the Ness county high school and is now a senior at Baker University, where he will graduate with the class of 1912.Pages 496-497 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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