Pages 792-793, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


  HISTORY OF BUTLER COUNTY 792 cont'd

H. C. Bates, a Civil war veteran, like many others in serving through the Civil war, had developed within him that trained courage and spirit of adventure which so well qualified him for the task of playing his part in the opening up and developing of the then wild and unbroken West. H. C. Bates is a native of Michigan, born in 1837, a son of Vrelon and Eunice (Wilhelm) Bates, the former a native of Massachusetts, and the latter of New Jersey. The Bates family consisted of four children as follows: H. C., the subject of this sketch; Charles F., Dexter, Mich.; Mrs. Emma Litchfield; Dexter, Mich., and Mary A., unmarried also resides at Dexter, Mich. H. C. Bates was reared in Dexter, Mich., and received a good common school education, considering the times and conditions, and after leaving school was employed in the great lumber industry in his native State. His peaceful pursuit, however, was interrupted when the call to arms was heralded in 1861. At the president's call for 75,000 volunteers to defend the Union, Mr. Bates enlisted in Company K, Fourth Michigan infantry, and remained in that branch of the military service about a year, and after serving his time he en-


  HISTORY OF BUTLER COUNTY 793

listed in the navy at Erie, Pa., and was a soldier of the sea for two and one-half years. He participated in a number of the important naval engagements of the Civil war, having served under Admiral Farragut.

At the close of the war Mr. Bates was mustered out at Memphis, Tenn., and after receiving an honorable discharge, returned to Michigan and re-engaged in the lumber business. He owned a mill at Dexter, which he sold in 1870, and came to Kansas, first locating in Franklin county. Shortly afterwards, he came to Butler county, locating in Augusta township, where he took up a claim on the southwest quarter of section 9, range 27, township 4, and still owns this place to which he has since added additional acreage. An unusual thing in the history of Mr. Bates' original claim is, that it has never gone through a single transfer since he received his title from the Government, and this is the only place, between Towanda and Augusta, of which that can be said. Immediately, upon locating in Butler county, Mr. Bates began farming in a small way, after the plan of the average pioneer, but increased his operations rapidly and soon became one of the extensive farmers and stock raisers of his neighborhood, and is today one of the prosperous and well to do citizens of Butler county. In October, 1910, at the close of a period embracing forty years of successful activity, he came to Augusta and purchased three lots upon which he built a commodious and comfortable residence which is his present home.

Mr. Bates was united in marriage at Dexter, Mich., to Miss Nettie Negus, a native of that place, and a daughter of Vermont, parents, who settled in Michigan at an early date. Mrs. Bates is a sister of Col. E. L. Negus, who served with distinction in the Civil war, and it is recalled that the severity of loss which his regiment suffered at the battle of Gettysburg is almost without parallel in the annals of the Civil war. Of his 1,126 men who answered at roll-call in the morning before going into action, only 138 were present at roll-call the following morning. One child has been adopted by Mr. and Mrs. Bates, William, who resides at Augusta. He married Maud Beaver, an Augusta girl, and to them have been born four children, as follows: Harvey, Blanche, Lena and Frank. While Mr. Bates was not one of the first settlers of Butler county, he came here at a time when many of the early pioneer conditions prevailed, and has seen the great development from that time to the present Butler county with her prosperous citizens and progressive institutions. When he came here the nearest railroad was at Emporia, and he remembers when there were only seven houses in Wichita. Many changes have taken place within the lifetime of this sturdy pioneer.


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Pages 792-793, transcribed by Carolyn Ward from History of Butler County, Kansas by Vol. P. Mooney. Standard Publishing Company, Lawrence, Kan.: 1916. ill.; 894 pgs.


Tom & Carolyn Ward
Columbus, KS

tcward@columbus-ks.com


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