Joseph Benson Prose, of Hoisington, Kan., a leading member of the Barton county bar, is a descendant of Revolutionary ancestry and was reared amid the influences of professional life. He was born Feb. 8, 1856, at Patriot, Ohio, son of Rev. John R. Prose and his wife, Clara E. Johnson. Rev. John R. Prose was a native of Patriot, Ohio, born Sept. 10, 1821. He was a student of the Ohio Wesleyan University, at Delaware, Ohio, and was engaged in the Methodist Episcopal ministry, in Ohio, seventy years, his service having been continuous and having extended to within ten days of his death, Sept. 21, 1909, when eighty-eight years of age. He passed away in a serene and beautiful old age, one of the best known and best loved ministers of the Methodist denomination in Ohio, and one who was zealously devoted to promoting the welfare of God's people and who left to his children a rich inheritance in the memory of his life of spotless integrity and of useful service to mankind. Reverend Prose was an active Mason and was a Masonic lecturer. Clara E. Johnson, the mother of John B. Prose, was a daughter of Judge David Johnson, who for twenty-eight years was an associate judge of the circuit court in Ohio, under the old constitution, prior to 1852, and who died Jan. 15, 1870. Both the paternal and maternal grandfathers of Mr. Prose were veterans of the war of 1812, the latter having served as a colonel under William Henry Harrison, later president of the United States. Two great-grandfathers of Mr. Prose gave patriotic service in the war of the Revolution. Four children were born to Rev. John R. Prose and his wife: Harriet A., born in Gallia county, Ohio, in 1851, is the wife of William A. Griffith, a farmer resident of Vinton county, Ohio; Benjamin H., born in September, 1853, is a prominent farmer and stockman in Vinton county, Ohio; Joseph Benson is the next in order of birth; and Ottomar, born in 1866, is a live-stockman at Circleville, Ohio.
Joseph Benson Prose was educated at Ohio University, Athens, Ohio. Deciding to make the legal profession his line of endeavor he began to read law in 1882. In 1885 he came to Kansas and located first at Great Bend. He had earned his own way through the university by teaching and continued in that profession six years after coming to Kansas. He was admitted to the bar at Larned, Kan., in 1887, and in 1891 took up the active practice of law at Hoisington, Kan., at which time he entered upon a career of intrepid endeavor which has been well rewarded with success. The same strength of determination and force of character which enabled him persistently to pursue the desired education and to fit himself for the profession of his choice, in spite of untoward circumstances, have also been valuable concomitants of his subsequent legal career. He has been admitted to practice in all the courts, both state and federal.
Politically Mr. Prose is a progressive Republican and takes an active interest in the work of his party, though he has never sought official honors. Fraternally he is a member of the Masonic order, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Modern Woodmen of America and the Oxidental.
On Sept. 2, 1896, Mr. Prose married Miss Olive Linder, born at Mattoon, Ill., April 30, 1865. In 1876 she accompanied her parentsDaniel W. Linder and wifeto Barton county, Kansas, where they located on government land and where they still reside, prominent and respect pioneers of the county. Daniel W. Linder is a native of Mattoon, Ill., and his wife was born in Kentucky. Mr. and Mrs. Prose have children: Helen H., born July 10, 1897, and Bessie, born Oct. 10, 1898.
Mr. Prose has enjoyed both a professional and financial success, and during his twenty-seven years' residence in Kansas has acquired valuable real estate and other property holdings. He has served as city attorney of Hoisington at different times and was local attorney the Missouri Pacific railroad until three years ago, when he severed his connection with it. He is a man of public spirit, and every project which promises the advancement of Hoisington receives his prompt and cordial support.Pages 497-498 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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