A. Coles

A. COLES. One of the leading spirits of Galena and a gentleman who is fast becoming prominent in the county is Police Judge Coles. The high character which he has sustained since coming to the county in 1895 has made him a popular resident of his city and early brought him preferment in public office the conduct of which is eminently satisfactory to his constituents.

Judge Coles is an Iowan, born in Des Moines County in 1838, the son of Robert and Lydia (Hunt) Coles. His father was for years a prominent Methodist preacher. Locating in Iowa in the territorial days, he became a leading factor in the events which preceded the birth of that State into the Union. In his later days he was a merchant in that State. Our subject's parents reared to maturity a family of six sons and two daughters, six of them being still in life.

Judge Coles passed the period of childhood and youth in a home, the atmosphere of which was permeated with religious feeling and fervor and where education was held in high regard. As he came to manhood he received a good business training in his father's store and was thus well fitted to take up the responsibilities of life on his own account when he arrived at maturity. He had hardly got down to the serious business of life, however, when that great event occurred which changed the lives and plans of so many young men of that day—the Civil War. At the full maturity of his powers some time before the war came on, he had settled in his own mind the course he would take and at once joined the army, becoming a member of the 13th Regiment, Iowa Vol. Inf., of which Col. (afterward Maj. Gen.) M. M. Crocker was commander. Judge Coles served his time with this organization, being discharged with the rank of 1st lieutenant of his company.

Returning from the war, Judge Coles spent seven years in California. Returning East, to Missouri, he soon thereafter became connected with the "Frisco" railroad system and was with it for a period of 18 years. He came to Cherokee County, Kansas, in June, 1895, since which time he has been intimately connected with affairs in the county. He received the appointment to his present office in November, 1902, and so satisfactory was his administration of the office during the remainder of the term as to secure him election in 1903. Judge Coles is a stanch Democrat and is a prominent figure in the councils of that party in the county. He is well up in Masonic circles, having taken all the degrees of the York rite.

In the State of Missouri in the year 1879, Judge Coles was happily united in marriage to Lucy Hunt, who has borne him four children, three of whom are living, as follows: Robert A., Lydia P. and Clarence B., all of whom are still inmates of the parental home.


History of Cherokee County Kansas and its representative citizens, ed. & comp. by Nathaniel Thompson Allison, 1904, transcribed by Carolyn Ward, instructor from USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, 3/11/97.


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