GRANT HANEY. Among the substantial citizens of Stanton County who in their earlier years experienced the uses of adversity and ate their bread by the sweat of their brow is Grant Haney, who today has one of the largest ranches of Mitchell Township.
Mr. Haney came to this locality in May, 1886, when a youth of eighteen. He was one of a considerable family that has become widely known in Stanton and Hamilton counties. He was born in Brown County, Illinois, June 5, 1868, a son of James Haney. His father was a native of Kentucky, born across the Ohio River from Madison, Indiana, and grew up there on a farm. There was no opportunity to acquire an education, and as a youth he did not even learn to read or write. When a young man he went to Indiana, and was married there and later moved to Illinois and engaged in farming. His home was in Illinois from the time of the Civil war, and his life was spent in a quiet and unofficial way. In May, 1886, he and his wife and some of their younger children came to Western Kansas, making the journey by railroad. They were practically strangers in the locality. James Haney filed on a homestead, the west half of the southeast quarter of section 15, township 27, range 41, and this land is now a part of the estate of his son Grant. His first Kansas home was a dugout, and it housed himself, wife and three minor children, and was their abode about fifteen years. The children grew up there, married and then started on careers of their own. About that time the parents moved to Syracuse, where James Haney engaged in the livery business and where he died in 1900. He was a republican voter, seldom missed an election, and was a Methodist and an official of the congregation. He married Sarah Cordry, who was born near Madison, Indiana. She was also an active Methodist. She died in Stanton County in April, 1915, having been born in June, 1828, and was well upwards of ninety years. Their children were: Sarah H., who died in Kansas, unmarried; Mary, who first married John Tapp and later Andrew Hammond, and died in Kingman, Kansas, her only son being now a soldier in the National Army; Lydia, who first married Arthur Stone and later Aaron Cole, and is now living at Syracuse, Kansas, a widow; Lucy, who married Thomas Wyatt and afterward John Kyle, and died in this section of Kansas; Charles H., a rancher of Stanton County; John, who died in Stanton County; and Grant, who is the youngest of the family.
Grant Haney had acquired his education in a country school in Brown County, Illinois, before coming to Kansas. He was only eighteen years of age when in Stanton County in November, 1886, he married Miss Ida Gray, a daughter of William and Julia (Brimm) Gray. Her father spent his life in Brown County, Illinois, where Mr. and Mrs. Haney grew up, Mrs. Haney being one of a numerous family.
William Gray was a veteran of the Civil war, served from Illinois, and was a member of Company G, Sixteenth Illinois Cavalry, and was discharged at the close of the war. He died in December, 1917, in Beardstown, Illinois, at the age of seventy-two. His children are Mrs. Haney; Grace, who died the wife of Lon Gray in Illinois; Allie, wife of Doc Reische, of Versailles, Illinois; Arthur, of Rushville, Illinois; Josie, who died in Illinois as Mrs. Scott Perry; Maggie Stone, wife of Charles Stone, of Chambersburg, Illinois: Minnie, who married Russell Lee, of Beardstown, Illinois; and Jessie, wife of Fred Davis, of Beardstown.
Mr. and Mrs. Haney were the first couple married in Stanton County. His start as a married man was a most humble one. As equipment he had a team of mules and a cow. Pre-empting a claim in section 1, township 27, range 41, he built there a dugout for the reception of his bride. In a short time he proved up this claim and then homesteaded in section 18, township 27, range 41. On this he built a small frame house. He worked hard and in five years had a deed from the United States for his land. Those were the years in which he experienced his most strenuous battle with hardships and with vicissitudes. It was not every day that he had the next day's food in his larder. Hunger comes to us whether food is present or absent, and if absent famine spices the lot of the hungry man. It was not even possible to find work when he needed it, and he needed it pretty constantly in those years. The thing which actually started him up hill and put him into the cattle business was trading his homestead for eight heifers and $200 in cash.
With this modest capital and equipment he bought the quarter section where his present home is, the southwest quarter of section 12, township 27, range 41. It was a tract of buffalo grass and his first house there was built of frame and at the time was one of the best in the community. With additions and improvements it has sheltered his growing family and the home is now surrounded by a grove and orchard of his own planting. His original barn was a shed 14 by 30, but since then a structure has been erected which will accommodate thirty head of horses and with mow room for fifteen tons of feed. Mr. Haney has succeeded as a mixed farmer and stock man and is breeding and handling the White Face cattle and also raises numerous horses and mules. From time to time he has developed his land holdings until his ranch now embraces fifteen quarter sections and an eighty, making 2,480 acres, lying in two bodies, all under fence and with 250 acres under cultivation.
Mr. Haney assisted in the organization of his local school district. No. 22, and has been clerk of the district almost all the years he has lived in the community. He has been trustee of Mitchell Township and in 1914, was elected a county commissioner to succeed Commissioner Winger. His associates on the board have been R. R. Friend and Willie E. Wright. This board in addition to routine duties has organized a county high school to take the place of the old district high school, which proved unsatisfactory. The county high school means an outlay of about $3,000 a year for education and it employs a faculty of three teachers. The board has also made a concerted effort toward road building, and Stanton County now boasts some good highways and is developing a system toward the standards set by some of the older and more populous communities of the state. In politics Mr. Haney is a republican and was twenty-four years old when he cast his first vote for president. He is a stockholder in the Hutchinson Packing Company. He has never joined a secret fraternity and is an active Methodist and a member of the Mitchell congregation.
Mr. and Mrs. Haney have a family of children whose names in order of birth are Grace, Nell, Edith, James W., Ethel and Arthur Grant. Grace is the wife of Jesse H. Gregory, of Stanton County, and has a son, Enos, and a daughter, Olive Iline. Nell married Arthur L. Helmick, of Stanton County, and has a daughter, Lenore. Edith is now Mrs. Frazier, of Syracuse, and has children named Iola Leona and Alice.
Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p.,  leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.
Tom & Carolyn Ward
Home Page for Kansas
Search all of Blue Skyways
The KSGenWeb Project