Edward Campbell Little.In the year 1134 William Little was born on the North Sea at Bridlington, Yorkshire, England. In the year 1198 he died, as he passed most of his life, a Canon of Newberg Abbey in the North Riding of Yorkshire. He was the foremost scholar and historian of the Twelfth century in England, the author of the Standard History of England for that century, and is known in history as William of Newbury. In the next century John Little, famous as Robin Hood's lieutenant, took rank as England's foremost archer and athlete, from which place he has not been ousted in the seven centuries that have followed. Robin Hood and Little John first met on a log crossing a stream. "Go back, my man," said the King of the Foresters. "Not your man nor any man's man," said John Little. "Go back yourself. I came on the log first." Declining to accept this excellent advice, Robin Hood was promptly tossed into the stream and secured a new lieutenant, and the Little family was launched on the pages of history in a manner entirely satisfactory to its members.
In the Twelfth and Thirteenth centuries there appears to have been quite an immigration from Yorkshire into Dumfriesshire, Scotland, the Bruces and Balloils being particularly notable. The Littles seemed to have joined in this hegira, settling exactly on the border between Scotland and England in Dumfriesshire on what became known as the disputed ground. By the year 1300 Edward Little married a niece of Sir William Wallace and was a Scotch patriot. By 1398 A. D. Nicol Little was an intermediary, adjusting difficulties between the Scotch and the English on the border. However, the constant border forays back and forth all harried the debated ground occupied by the Littles and in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth centuries they were forced to retaliation. Uniting with the Armstrongs and a few others similarly situated they declared war against all of the known world within a couple of days' ride and took care of themselves very well until equally efficient but more technical methods for enforcing equity and justice were adopted by the people on the border. In 1525 William Little was a member of the Scotch Parliament from Edinburgh and, in 1592, Edward Little held the same seat. About 1580 William Little founded the University of Edinburgh and his brother, Clement Little, an advocate, established the library of that institution. In the Sixteenth century several Littles were baronets in England, the daughter of one marrying the brother of Francis Bacon. Many of the family settled in Northern Ireland. At Gretna in Dumfriesshire is a tombstone which reads, "Here lyes in Redkirk, Thomas Little, born 1548, died 1659, and his spouse, Masie Dalglise, and their son, John Little, died 1698, aged 110 years, and his spouse, Barbara Johnston." There then followed three generations of men of that name and family of such age that the average of five generations is eighty-four years. This Thomas Little and his son, John, were keepers of the king's forests, owing fealty to none but the king. This seems to have been the family from which the American stock spread.
About the beginning of the Eighteenth century an emigrant ship carried one of them, a widower and his children, to New York City. An English man-of-war sent among the emigrants a crew to press them into the English navy. The captain of the emigrant ship declining to resist, John Little declared himself, "The mon that won't foight is a dead mon." The English navy was defeated and the Scotch emigrants launched the family in America near Shrewsbury, Monmouth county, New Jersey, in a manner again entirely satisfactory to its descendants. The first emigrant, Col. John Little of the Monmouth regiment in King George's war, was a Presbyterian elder, a successful farmer, and died in 1749, leaving a will still on file in Monmouth county. His son, Judge John Little, married Moica Langstreth (Longstreet), was made judge of the court of common pleas of Monmouth county in the year 1749, and a member of the committee of public safety in 1775. He was the "rich Little," dying in 1785, and his will is still on file. His three sons, Capt. Thomas Little, Capt. Theophilus Little and Lieut. John Little, served during the Revolutionary war with the Monmouth regiment, John being killed by the the Hessians in action. Capt. Theophilus Little married Mary Polhemus, sister of Major Polhemus of the Monmouth regiment, bought a large estate in northeastern Pennsylvania, in what is now Sullivan county, settling there with his half dozen sons about the year 1800 and leaving numerous descendants in that region. His son, Squire Thomas Little settled in Licking county, Ohio, just after the war of 1812 with his wife, Lydia Jackson, and his son, Theophilus Little, Sr., born in Monmouth county, New Jersey, in 1797. Theophilus married Eunice Weeks, whose father was a Connecticut Yankee (they fought at Louisburg), and whose mother was the daughter of Welsh emigrants by the name of Griffith. Their son, Theophilus Little, Jr., was born in Licking county, Ohio, in 1830, and married there, in 1855, Sarah Elliott Taylor, a graduate of the class of 1853 at the Granville Female Seminary, daughter of Gen. Jonathan Taylor, a member of Congress from Ohio, whose ancestors settled in northeastern Connecticut about 1650, and granddaughter of Samuel Elliott of Carvel Hall's Maryland regiment in the Revolution. Clifford Little died in infancy. One son, the Hon. William T. Little, served with distinction in the Oklahoma legislature, was the first compiler of the statutes of Oklahoma Territory, published the first newspaper in Oklahoma Territory, founded the Historical Society of Oklahoma, and died in 1908, postmaster at Perry, Okla., leaving a widow, Mrs. Maude Little (nee Jensen), and two childrenSarah and Edward Thomas Little. He was educated at Kansas University and Columbian Law School.
Col. Edward Campbell Little, the other son was born Dec. 14, 1858, on the place settled by the Elliotts in the Eighteenth century at Newark, Ohio, coming to Kansas with his parents in the spring of 1866. He herded cattle, carried United States mail, worked on the farm, clerked in a store, worked in a wholesale house, graduated from the Abilene High School, taught country school, entered the State University of Kansas, taught city schools at Enterprise, Abilene and Leavenworth, graduated at the University of Kansas as a Bachelor of Arts in 1883, being selected by the faculty as one of the three commencement day speakers and by vote of his class as one of the class day speakers. He was captain of the baseball nine, won the 100 yard race on field day in his freshman year, was business manager, editor and editor-in-chief of the Kansas University Review, was junior class day orator, was orator for the Oread Literary Society in one of the annual contests with the the Shield, the nationl[sic] organ of the Phi Kappa Psi college fraternity.
Reading law one year with Hon. L. B. Wheat of Leavenworth and one year with Hon. John P. Usher of Lawrence, secretary of the interior in Lincoln's cabinet, he graduated in the law department of the University of Kansas and was admitted to the bar in 1886, being valedictorian of his class and receiving the degrees of Bachelor of Laws and Master of Arts. He practiced law for three years at Ness City, Kan., where he served as city attorney. In 1890 he returned to his old home at Abilene as general attorney for the Hardesty-Pelham corporations, and was elected county attorney. In 1897 he was associated with ex-Chief Justice Martin and Attorney-General Boyle in the law firm of Martin, Little & Boyle, at Topeka, Kan. In 1908 he removed to Kansas City, Kan., and has been engaged in the practice of the law at that point ever since.
Colonel Little was chairman of the Republican state convention that opened the campaign of 1888 that rolled up the majority of 80,000; was president of the Republican League of Kansas and delegate-at-large to the Republican national nominating convention at Minneapolis, Minn., in 1892. He supported Roosevelt in 1904 and the nominations of that party since, but is independent in his thinking,. He was appointed by President Harrison and confirmed by the senate of the United States in 1893 as diplomatic agent and consul-general to Egypt, receiving the Grand Cordon of the Medjidieh from the Sultan of Turkey for diplomatic service. Richard Harding Davis dedicated to him his book, "The Rulers of the Mediterranean." In 1896 Colonel Little was one of those who took the position that the corporations should not dominate public life and supported Mr. Bryan, being chairman of the Free Silver Republican convention, chairman of the delegation to their national convention, and at the request of the Nebraska delegation, placed Mr. Bryan in nomination for president in 1896. He made an extensive and fruitful campaign and was a candidate in the Fusion caucus for United States senator. He was second on the first ballot, first on the fifth ballot and through two all-night sessions of that caucus stood always either first, second or third, running very closely with the other two leading candidates and finally being beaten for the nomination and election by the Hon. William A. Harris. He served as secretary to John W. Leedy, who gave him credit for some of the work done on state papers in that administration. He secured for Frederick Funston an appointment as colonel of the Twentieth Kansas infantry in the Spanish-American war, and served throughout the Spanish and Filipino wars as lieutenant-colonel of the Twentieth Kansas himself. Colonel Little participated in the battles of Rio Tulijuan, Polo, Malinto, Meycaucauan, Marilao, Bocave, Bigwa, Guiguinto, Malolos, the Malolos night attack, San Fernando, June 16th and other days, and on several of these occasions was in command of the regiment. At Marilao he crossed the river on the railroad bridge at the head of the regiment under a heavy fire. At Guiguinto his disposition of his battalionthe first to crosswas largely responsible for the victory achieved in this fierce engagement. In common with the rest of the regiment who participated in the extra service after the term of enlistment was expired, he received a Congressional medal of Honor. In 1908-09 he was department commander of the United Spanish War Veterans, Department of Kansas, being twice unanimously elected and was twice made a member of their national committee on legislation, being chairman of their delegation to the national encampment at Denver in 1910.
Colonel Little is the author of several verses, including "Domus et Porta," is the writer of several sketches in "Pearson's" and "Everybody's" magazines, "A Son of the Border," "The Battle of Adobe Walls," "The Round Table of Dodge City," which was illustrated by Frederic Remington.
On Nov. 29, 1899, in the chapel of Bethany College at Topeka, Kan., he was married to Miss Edna Margaret Steele, a teacher in that institution. This lady was eighth in direct descent from John Steele, the first secretary of the colony of Connecticut and the founder of Hartford, one of the original proprietors and the first representative in the general court of Newton (now Cambridge), Mass. They have one son, Donald Little, who was born at Abilene, Kan., Jan. 29, 1901. The family resides at 618 Freeman avenue, Kansas City, Kan.Pages 1524-1527 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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