JACOB LINCOLN RUDDICK. One of the veteran employes of the Santa Fe Railway Company in Kansas is Jacob Lincoln Ruddick, who for over thirty years has been the reliable, conscientious and hard working representative of that railroad corporation at Ellinwood. There could perhaps be no better measure of a man's real usefulness to business and society than is contained in this brief statement of Mr. Ruddick's record.
As a farm boy he had an ambition for railroading, and his life and work have exemplified a long and persistent purpose. He was born on a farm in Jackson County, Indiana, near Seymour, April 1, 1861. His grandfather, Solomon Ruddick, came to Southern Indiana in pioneer times, and was a merchant at Farmington before Seymoor was founded. As evidence of his progressive spirit it is recalled that he took stock in the Ohio and Mississippi Railway when it was built through his section of Indiana. He died at Seymour, the father of three sons and five daughters, namely: Jacob M., Elwood, Lindley, Mrs. Mary Wheeler, Mrs. Anna Morris, Mrs. Esther Sweany, Mrs. Jane Sweany and Mrs. Elizabeth Newkirk.
Jacob M. Ruddick, father of the Ellinwood citizen, was also born in Southern Indiana, became a farmer and died in 1906. His first wife was Renna Brown, whose parents spent their lives in Iowa. She died in 1873, the mother of the following children: Thomas B., who died at Seymour. Indiana; William R., still farming in that section of Indiana; Isaac, who was an Indiana farmer and died there; Mrs. Mary Moore, wife of a farmer in Jackson County; Jacob L., the only member of the family in Kansas; and Minerva, Mrs. Newton Spurling of Seymour.
Jacob M. Ruddick married for his second wife Miss Malinda Sweany, who died without children. His third wife was Barbara Carr, who became the mother of two children, George, a farmer near Seymour, and Mrs. Cora Dannetell, also of Seymour.
Jacob Lincoln Ruddick spent his boyhood and youth on a farm in Southern Indiana and had a district school education. While he enjoyed the environment and atmosphere of country life, his ambition was for achievement in some field not bounded by a rural horizon. He chose telegraphy, and acquired a good theoretical equipment in Sheridan's Telegraph School at Oberlin, Ohio. After graduating there he at once came to Kansas and gave his training a practical turn in the railroad service.
Mr. Ruddick arrived in Kansas in December, 1881, and his first experience was in a "thanky" job with the Santa Fe Company at Clements. He was regularly placed on the roll of the company at Pierceville, beginning work as operator there February 2, 1882. After thirteen months at Pierceville he was transferred to Larned as operator, serving from March, 1883, to August, 1885. He then became agent of the road at Elmdale, and from there was transferred in September, 1886, to his present station as agent of the company at Ellinwood. Here he succeeded George Y. Hart, then one of the old employes of the company. On February 2, 1919, Mr. Ruddick rounded out a consecutive service of thirty-seven years with the Santa Fe, and he is now spoken of as "the oldest man" on the western division of the system.
A man in his position seldom has much time for important outside interests, but Mr. Ruddick has always endeavored to do his duty as a citizen. He is now president of the Ellinwood School Board and has been a member of that board for a number of years. He was one of the original stockholders and a director of the Citizens State Bank, and has served as committeeman of his township in the republican party. His home is the modest item which he has contributed to the growth of Ellinwood.
At Elk City, Kansas, December 4, 1884, Mr. Ruddick married Miss Eva Walker. She was born near Seymour, Indiana, October 24, 1861, daughter of John W. and Jane (Ragon) Walker. Her father moved from Jackson County, Indiana, to Kansas, and took a claim near Turon in Reno County, and he and his wife spent their last years there. He had served with the Union army as an Indiana soldier. Mrs. Ruddick was the only daughter of five children, her brothers being Walter, of Hutchinson, Kansas; John and Earnest, of Turon, Kansas; and Harry, of Kansas City, Missouri. Mr. and Mrs. Ruddick have two talented children, both of whom are now living at Berkeley, California. Lossie is a graduate of music from Bethany College at Lindsborg, Kansas, is a highly talented pianist, and is now teaching music at Berkeley. Leon, who spent two years in the Lindsborg College Conservatory, also attended the University of California at Berkeley two years, entered the service of the navy at Mare Island as the solo cornetist of the band. Cornet playing is his special forte. Before the band was ordered into active service the armistice was signed, and he was released on special order to take supervision of the music of time high school and of the numerous grammar schools of Berkeley.
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.
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