Clarence J. Solt, of Barnes, Kan., is one of the progressive business men of northern Kansas and a promoter of thoroughbred cattle and was born in Fairfield county, Ohio, May 28, 1873, and is a son of Malancthon Solt, a personal sketch of whom, with the family history, appears in this volume. Clarence J. came west with his parents in 1884 when he was a boy of eleven years. He had attended the public schools in his native county in Ohio and after coming to Kansas graduated from the high school at Barnes. He then attended the University of Kansas one year, after which he took a business course in Brown's Commercial College, Kansas City, Mo. He graduated at this institution and returned to Barnes and joined his father, who was extensively engaged in the grain and cattle business at that place. At the age of twenty-one he became a partner of his father in the grain business and at the same time began operating a farm which he owned two miles north of town. This place has since become famous on account of the fine stock which Mr. Solt has produced there. At the age of twenty-five Mr. Solt founded the first herd of Hereford cattle in this section of Kansas, starting with a small bunch in 1900, and he and his brother in a short time became the owners of more than eighty head of full-blooded registered Herefords. In the early '80s his father had imported some of the original full-blood Shorthorn cattle from Ohio and Kentucky, and when C. J. embarked in the business he had a very fine strain of blood in his cattle which were descended from this original herd. The herd was headed first by "Young Prince," and next was "Prosperity," bred by Cornish & Patten, of Osborne, Mo., and the last was "Orpheus," grandson of "Beau Donald," bred by Marshall Field at Madison, Neb. In 1906 the Solt Bros. sold their herd of Herefords. During the time they were in the thoroughbred Hereford cattle business they also fed thousands of cattle and at one time had nearly two thousand head on feed at once.
Mr. Solt has been busy in other lines of endeavor, in which he has succeeded equally as well as in the cattle business. In 1902 he and his youngest brother, L. M., ran the first telephone line into Barnes, before a telephone company was thought of there. They ran the wire on hedge posts without insulators, and two years later he, with his oldest brother, L. C., organized the Barnes Telephone Company, which they operated about a year and a half, when they sold out to the Barnes-Rochdale Coöperative Company. In 1911 he was one of the organizers of the Barnes State Bank and is now vice-president of that institution. He was one of the pioneer silo men of this section of Kansas and built the second silo in Washington county. In 1912 he built the largest silo in the State of Kansas on his farm. Its weight on the foundation is 150 tons, height 51 feet and inside diameter 22 1/2 feet, with a capacity of 525 tons. Mr. Solt has also introduced the first pure-blood Holstein cattle in this section and is now developing a herd of these cattle on his farm south of town, where he has one of the model dairy farms of Kansas. He fattened 200 head of baby beeves this year (1913) and at this writing has fifty-six head weighing 900 pounds each, from which he will select fifteen to place on exhibition at the American Royal Stock Show at Kansas City this fall.
Mr. Solt was united in marriage, December 28, 1897, to Miss Belle, daughter of Henry and Annetta (Rickel) Husselman, of Clifton, Kan., both of whom are natives of Indiana. The father was a pioneer merchant at Chepstow and later was engaged in business at Barnes for fifteen years. He now resides at Clifton, Kan. Mrs. Solt was born at Waterloo, Ind., and was only two years old when her parents removed to Kansas. She received her education in the public schools of Barnes and Washington and later took a music course at Lindsborg, Kan., and taught school for a time. To Mr. and Mrs. Solt have been born three children: Vivian Melancthon, born April 15, 1899; Maynard Harold, born March 4, 1904, and May Lucile, born November 4, 1900, and died August 10, 1901.
Mr. Solt is a Progressive and has served as mayor of Barnes two terms and has been councilman one term. He is chairman of the county committee of the Young Men's Christian Association and has held this position for four years. He is also corresponding secretary of that association. He is a member of the Conference Board of Education of Kansas. He and Mrs. Solt are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and he is superintendent of the Sunday school. They are active and enthusiastic workers in all church and kindred affairs.Pages 388-389 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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