William W. Branson

WILLIAM W. BRANSON, one of the highly respected citizens of Ross township, Cherokee County, located in section 32, township 31, range 23, is also a survivor of that gallant army which marched out in defense of the country's integrity, in the stormy days of 1861. He was born in Harrison County, Ohio, May 10, 1837, and is a son of Abraham and Ann W. (Wilson) Branson.

Abraham Branson was born in Loudoun County, Virginia, and the mother in Pennsylvania. They were married at Bridgeport, Ohio, where our subject's father was in the business of manufacturing woolen goods. They had seven children: Lindley, Rachel, Jonathan, Elizabeth, William W., John C. and Abraham, the survivors being our subject and Elizabeth and Abraham, both of whom reside in Harrison County, Ohio.

William W. Branson obtained his education in the schools of Harrison County and remained at home, assisting his father, until 21 years of age. He then made a visit to Cedar and Muscatine counties, Iowa, and while there, in April, 1861, he enlisted for three months, in Company C, 1st Reg., Iowa Vol. Inf., and took part in the battle of Wilson's Creek and later was mustered out. Seeing that the war would continue, he re-enlisted, entering Company C, 98th Reg., Ohio Vol. Inf., and participated in many of the most terrible battles of the unhappy struggle. From Chattanooga he marched with his regiment through Georgia and on, with Sherman's army, to the sea, and took part in the battles at Resaca, Peach Tree Creek, Kenesaw Mountain, Atlanta and Jonesboro, and in innumerable skirmishes, his last fight being at Bentonville, North Carolina. His was an unusual case, for he was much exposed but was neither captured nor wounded and when he was finally discharged at Camp Dennison, he was able to go back to the farm and resume his work.

Prior to enlisting, Mr. Branson had married, in February, 1860, Amanda Sergeant who was born in Harrison County, Ohio, and died in 1873. She was the mother of seven children, viz: Hortense, who married J. H. Jacobs, a farmer of Oklahoma; Russell W., postmaster at Cherokee, Kansas, who married Edith Glover; Mary Ann, who is the wife of J. S. Larimer, of Greenwood County, Kansas; Rachel E., who is the wife of F. M. Curry, of Argentine, Kansas; Loretta, who is the wife of Montgomery Boore, a farmer of Cherokee County; Lizzie, who is the wife of George Millard, of Crawford County, Kansas; and John H., who married Huldah Johnson and resides at Argentine, Kansas.

Mr. Branson was married, second, to Kate Marsh, who was born in Noble County, Ohio, and they have one daughter, Elsie Edith.

In 1878 Mr. Branson settled with his family, in Cherokee County, Kansas, for a period of four months and then bought a farm of 80 acres in Crawford County, which he operated some years. In 1888 he bought one half of section 29, township 31, range 23, in Ross township, for a brother, and remained on that place until 1891. Since then he has rented his present farm in section 32, a property that shows evidences of good management.

Politically Mr. Branson is identified with the Republican party. He has never desired political recognition, and is satisfied to do his full duty as a citizen and to permit others the honors of office. He is a member of the Methodist Church.


History of Cherokee County Kansas and its representative citizens, ed. & comp. by Nathaniel Thompson Allison, 1904, transcribed by Mike York, student from USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, 12/20/96.


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